Dental plaque (a film of bacteria that forms on your teeth) is known to be the main cause of periodontal (gum) disease. When the bacteria settle on your teeth they form a whitish film called biofilm. Those that are not removed cause formation of “pockets,” areas of separation between the teeth and their surrounding gums, in which plaque hardens into deposits known as calculus or tartar. The purpose of having your teeth cleaned regularly by a trained professional is to remove deposits of plaque and calculus. Removal of hard deposits on your teeth is called “scaling.” This can be done by ultrasonic power scalers.
How they work: These instruments use the energy of ultrasonic vibration to crush and remove hard, calcified deposits of calculus. They also create shock waves that disrupt bacterial cells. Use of these tools includes washing and flushing the pockets and any exposed root surfaces with water.
They are effective instruments for calculus removal in shallow gum pockets and in periodontal pockets greater than 4mm. They are very effective in removing calculus from root surfaces. Their small tips can penetrate deeper into periodontal pockets than manual instruments and are more comfortable to experience, and they are more effective for cleaning difficult nooks and crannies. Coolant sprays flush the area and remove bacteria and their products. They require less time than manual instruments.