Scale and Root Planing Cost

Scale and Root Planing Cost

How much does scale and root planing usually cost? It will depend on your dentist, your insurance, and the extent of your treatment. However, there are some considerations to go over to ascertain how much this procedure may cost you.

What is Scaling and Root Planing?

It is common for food and bacteria to build up on the surface of your teeth. The saliva in your mouth creates a film of moisture on your teeth and gums, and particles of food and microscopic bacteria can accumulate there. After the slurry gathers, it finds its way into your gums, and it leaves a path for more to follow. This is why scaling and root planing are so crucial.


Scaling involves a mildly invasive action, a small tool is physically inserted under the tooth, into the gums, and scrapes the bacteria and material from the tooth root. There is usually a scaler tool and a dental curette. The procedure is aimed at removing the source of bacterial infection directly, and then cleaning the area. The problem with bacteria under the gumline is that it infects and aggravates the area. The inflammation can cause the gums to retract from the surface of the tooth, exposing the roots to more bacteria attacks.

Root Planing

Root planing is when a tool is used to tactfully smooth the root structure of the tooth. Some material may be removed, but the idea is to provide a smooth and healthy tooth structure for the gums to reattach to after the bacteria is removed. The process is fairly common, and if your dentist recommends it, it may be very important for preventative care.

How much does Scaling and Root Planing Cost?

You should maintain your regular cleaning and examination schedule with your dentist. At some point, there may be a price for this. Your average examination and cleaning will probably run between 50-150 dollars before insurance. The roundabout number for dental scaling and root planing treatment is around 200-300 dollars before insurance. Ask your dentist if they think dental scaling and root planing would be recommend for your dental health. Then ask them for a cost breakdown at their office. Be sure to contact your insurance to get a crystal clear structure of what your coverage looks like.

Is it worthwhile?

Most of the material removed during dental scaling and root planing is not going to remove itself. If your dentist is recommending the procedure, it probably means you need it. Your dentist knows your dental health better than anyone, ask them what the best course of action is for your health.

Can you prevent plaque buildup under the gums?

The best way to care for your teeth is proper hygiene. You should be brushing at least twice a day, using gentle circular motions to pull moisture off of the gum line. Use your floss after every meal, you can carry one in your backpack or purse. Use the floss to gingerly follow the contours of your tooth down to the gumline. Use mouthwash and maintain a regular cleaning schedule. This is the best way to avoid infection and plaque buildup.

Scale and Root Planing Aftercare