This procedure is traditionally considered a non-surgical therapy. It is a last resourceattempt to treat gum disease while avoiding surgical therapy.
Typically one of 3 outcomes will occur following this therapy:
1- In cases of "mild periodontitis", this procedure will attempt to stop progression of disease, in which case the treatment objective will have been obtained and the patient is then placed into maintenance therapy to help reduce the chances of the disease from coming back.
2- In cases of "moderate periodontitis", this procedure alone will not be able to stop the progression of disease by itself. The objective in these cases is to help reduce the spread of the disease as much as possible so that surgical therapy will then only be targeted to the more advanced areas that are affected by more destruction and are more resistant.
3- In cases of "advanced periodontitis", surgical therapy is the only predictable means of treating the patient's condition. However typically in these cases the level of disease is so advanced that surgery cannot be performed immediately until the patient's condition is improved to a level to which their body can then undergo surgical therapy. In these more advanced cases the initial therapy will be "Root Planing" to help reduce the bacterial load in the gums and in order to help the gums and bones be able to undergo the surgical treatment.
In all 3 of the above scenarios, typically 4-8 weeks afforded to the gums before a re-evaluation examination is performed to evaluate the bodies ability to heal and improve and ultimately determine the next step of therapy if needed.
Typically all patients who have previously suffered from periodontitis "gum disease" are at a higher risk of having the disease come back in the future, and thus are recommended in monitoring their periodontal condition more closely by their periodontist and family dentist hygienist.
Your periodontist will typically suggest the best interval for you individually based on the severity of your initial condition as well as other contributing risk factors.