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Dental Hygiene/Deep Dental Cleaning


QUESTION: Perhaps Iím being too frugal but, last year I spent a fortune on a full mouth restoration. As part of the process I had several teeth pulled, 6 implants placed and a couple of bridges via the implants.  Anyway, I now only have 19 of my original teeth and am told I need a deep root cleaning for the cost of $2,000.  Iím assuming a deep cleaning is priced on a mouth full of teeth and wondering if it is appropriate to request a discount?

ANSWER: Greetings Dan,
If you need scaling and root planing it is most likely that you needed it back before the reconstruction.  In a complicated dental case the standard of care is to always do the periodontal treatment first.  Then after healing one can make a treatment plan based on the condition of the post treatment gums and teeth.  Furthermore, if you really have inflamed gums there is the possibility that the gums will, after scaling and root planing, pull back and show parts of metal which is now hidden under the gums.

Also, I think $2000 is a lot of money for scaling and root planing.  Who is slated to do the actual root planing, the hygienist, your dentist or a periodontal specialist?  Please let me know.  Also, what decade of life are you in, 40's 50's 60's etc?  Were you told why scaling and root planing are necessary for you?

Larry Burnett DDS

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QUESTION: Dr Burnett,

Thank you very much for taking the time to answer my question.  The scaling and root planing will be performed by the hygienist with one quadrant per visit. I am a 61 year old male and the full mouth restoration was completed last June after 11 months of procedures.

I had gone back to the dentist who completed the restoration for tooth pain (of a tooth that he had only place a cap onto) and he states his x-ray showed that I would benefit from a deep cleaning.  He did scale and plane that tooth and it did relieve the pain.

I don't argue the fact that I may need a deep cleaning as it has been several years since I've had that done. If it is normally suggested as routine I assume I need it.  However, as I initially mentioned, I only have 19 of my own teeth/roots and just assume it would take much less time and work than an individual with a full mouth of teeth and I thought the cost might be reflective of that.  And, if so, how could it be priced?

Thank you again,

Even though some of your teeth are missing there are enough left that most would charge the full fee for full mouth scaling and root planing.

However, I think $2,000 is about twice what most patients would pay for that service. I'll I'll bet you did spend a fortune on that full mouth rehab  If you are happy with the result, I'm sure it was worth it.

Larry Burnett, DDS

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Larry Burnett DDS


I can answer questions about prevention, elimination of, and non surgical treatment of periodontal diseases and early tooth decay. I can't answer questions concerning dental insurance payments.


Taught hygienists in a major dental hygiene school for about 20 years. Taught hands on courses concerning these categories to Dentists and Hygienists throughout the US and Canada including repeat lectures at the Annual Scientific Sessions of A.D.A. and A.G.D over several years. Personal hands on delivery of preventive hygiene services to disadvantaged children through a mobile school based prevention program.

RDH Magazine, Parkell, Dental India and some places of which I'm not aware.

Medical College of Virginia ( VCU) School of Dentistry.

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