Periodontal disease treatments like scaling and root planing improve oral health of Los Angeles residents


A variety of effective periodontal disease treatments are available right here in Los Angeles from Dr. Don Mungcal and his highly trained staff at Downtown Dental. One of them is scaling and root planing.
Your gums may be trying to tell you something. If you’re smart, you’ll listen.

Gum disease is one of the most common, yet overlooked, dental dangers that Americans face. Left unattended, it may develop into a serious condition called periodontitis. Severe gum disease not only affects your dental health. In addition to contributing to tooth loss, periodontitis has been linked to illnesses such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and dementia.

A variety of effective periodontal disease treatments are available right here in Los Angeles from Dr. Don Mungcal and his highly trained staff at Downtown Dental. One of them is scaling and root planing.

Here’s why you may need scaling and root planing

When you eat, you’re at risk for gum disease. Leftover food particles combine with saliva to form a soft, sticky film on your teeth. This is called plaque, and it can harbor millions of bacteria. If you’re diligent about brushing and flossing, and if you make appointments for regular dental cleanings to remove the plaque that a toothbrush can’t budge, you may stave off the tooth decay and gum disease plaque can cause.

But if you don’t make oral hygiene a priority, the bacteria in plaque can inflame your gums. Your gums may begin sending you subtle messages that you need to pay more attention to them. They may become red and swollen, or bleed when you brush your teeth. These are symptoms of gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease. If caught in the early stages, gingivitis can usually be reversed. If ignored, it can progress to moderate periodontitis, a condition in which the inflammation causes the gum to pull away from the teeth and create a pocket that becomes an even bigger breeding ground for bacteria. Advanced periodontitis affects the roots of your teeth and the bone that holds your teeth in place. This leads to shifting, loosening teeth, and eventually tooth loss.

Once you’ve moved beyond gingivitis, you will need a deeper, more thorough cleaning. Plaque that is not removed by brushing and flossing and routine dental cleanings can harden into a rough substance called tartar. Tartar adheres to the enamel of your teeth and invades the area below the gum line. Toxins released by tartar break down the fibers of the gum that hold your teeth firmly in place, creating the pockets mentioned earlier. The damage from the proliferation of bacteria is what leads to tooth loss.

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At this point, your dentist may suggest a deeper dental cleaning, known as scaling and root planing.

A heavy-duty plaque attack

Image of a smilling young lady

Think of scaling and root planing as a regular dental cleaning on steroids. The treatment is considered a first-line tactic for controlling periodontitis.

Here’s what to expect before, during, and after the procedure:

  • A hygienist or periodontist will evaluate your plaque build-up.
  • Using an instrument called a periodontal probe, he or she will measure the depth of the space between your teeth and gums. A normal depth is 3 millimeters or less. If yours is greater than that, you’re likely going to need deep cleaning.
  • Numbing gel or an anesthetic injection will be given to you to prevent possible discomfort during the procedure.
  • Using an instrument called a small scaler, an ultrasonic cleaner, or both, the tartar will be thoroughly removed down to the bottom of each periodontal pocket.
  • Next, the root surfaces are planed, or smoothed out, so that plaque is less likely to stick to them.
  • Antibiotics and other medications may be administered directly into the pockets to help control infection and pain and promote healing.
  • If your tartar build-up is severe, you may be scheduled for two appointments.
  • Expect to experience some bleeding for the first few days after scaling.
  • Be sure to keep regular follow-up visits to be certain the depth of the pockets is back to normal.
  • Make a solid commitment to caring for your teeth at home. Ask Dr. Mungcal for pointers on brushing and flossing techniques and talk to him about the Perio Protect Method® you can use at home to help prevent gum disease.

If you think your gums are trying to tell you something, don’t want until they’re screaming. Call Dr. Don Mungcal today at Downtown Dental, (213) 863-9464, and request a regular checkup and gum evaluation

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"I am a legit Patient at this practice. The Doctor is amazing - educated, skilled and patient. Allison, my Dental Hygienist, is really friendly, knowledgeable and proactive about her patients' oral health. In my experience, the office staff at Downtown Dental is always professional, friendly, and thoughtful about my time. Plus, they offer reasonable financing! If you're honest about your budget (for people like me who don't have dental insurance), they can often work with you to stay within budget. I also learned that they use the best equipment in their field and staff gets training often on new dental techniques. If you are someone who works, resides or likes to visit Downtown - this is an especially excellent place to see the dentist periodically.

Downtown Dental is a fantastic Dental practice in the heart of the city. They are located near LA's Cultural hub of museums, concert halls and the like (The Broad, MOCA + more ). But don't let all that (magic) discourage you from making your appointment, because traffic is usually very smooth on Grand and getting in and out of their secure and validated parking lot (in their building) is a breeze. They also have 2 e-car charging stations if that's how you roll. If you work in DTLA, like many, you can even get a lunchtime cleaning!

Sidebar: The office is located inside a gorgeous apartment building, full of high end furnishings, accentuated with stunning street art. You may have even passed by & seen the Subway flags at street level- the dental office is right upstairs. It's worth a try, especially if you want great oral health, love art, culture and the city!"
"Still the best I've ever been to! The entire staff is more than knowledgeable & helpful!

Don't waste your time going to other places, this dentist & his team are your best bet!

They are courteous, flexible, and above all: PROFESSIONAL."
"What an amazing staff and dental team!!

I had four front crowns and 2 root canals done all in about 3 hours! It was pain free! Dr Mungcal was fast and I didn't feel a thing! People compliment my teeth all the time! ...Little do they know they're fake! Very grateful!!! I am in Invisalign now and love how it stopped me from clenching and grinding my teeth! My teeth and gums are healthy because of all the amazing dental work they have done and continue to do!! Oh ...And they offered nitrous which made the whole experience awesome! Go here if you want dental work done right!!"
"Downtown dental made my cavity experience as painless as possible, and the technology they use is so up to date and accurate.

The staff are also very friendly and know the best habits for having a healthy mouth.
So glad I started going here!"
"Absolutely the best dental office! In all reality I used to hate going to the dentist I would cancel my appointments at my old Drs office all the time !! But the Hygienists and the staff in general are so welcoming and make you wanna keep coming back. They are always ready to deliver and Allison did an amazing job on my teeth cleaning thank you for that"
"This review is long overdue. I've been a patient at downtown dental since 2005 and have had nothing but positive experiences. I've had quite a bit of dental work and when I had a cracked crown recently, they scheduled me the next day and replaced it at no charge. They would have scheduled me that day but sadly, I'm no longer a patient as I've moved to NorCal. I felt like they really went out of the way to accommodate me and I appreciate that! Thanks guys!!"
"Great practice, the doctors and assistants are very professional, helpful and pleasant. They make dental appointments almost enjoyable...not something I thought possible!

Katie the hygienist is not only gentle, professional and very professional but also inspiring. She makes you want to have the best gums in Los Angeles.

Thank you guys!"
"The team at Downtown Dental are the best! They have done both an implant and Invisalign for me. They keep me informed about all the steps and always get me in and out quickly! I love that they can do everything right in their own offices too."
"My story is: I chipped a took eating cereal! Who does that!?! (The cereal was crunchy I'll admit). I went to Downtown Dental and Dr. Mungcal evaluated my situation and realized my bite needed to be adjusted. I grind my teeth at night also so the combination of it all was wearing my teeth down. He recommended invisalign to align my bite. I was hesitant because it's pricey was SO WORTH IT!!! 8 months later, my bite is fixed and aligned and my teeth are straighter which is a bonus! I am only 34 and I want to keep my teeth healthy and strong for a long time! Dr. Mungcal and the entire staff are amazing and took GREAT care of me. You can rest assured you will be taken care of by them!"
"Came to downtown dental with my husband for his first dental implant. He was very nervous on getting this procedure done.. From his experience he said the staff were super friendly made him feel very welcomed..the dentist made his procedure quick and painless my husband didn't even need his medication for the swelling or pain ... Highly recommend... We Will be coming here from now on for our dental needs."

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