Health & Fitness

Root Planning and Scaling for Periodontal Health

Did you know that periodonto gingivitis affects almost half of the adult population? This inflammatory condition results from an accumulation of plaque and bacteria on the gums. If left untreated, it can lead to tooth loss, or worse, the spread of bacteria into other organs. Therefore, identifying risk factors and systematic planning are critical for a successful implementation of your periodontal programs.

If your organization is ready to move past pilot tests and fear-based strategies in order to establish a more sustainable long-term plan for root planing and scaling programs, this article is for you! In it you’ll find tips on how to plan and scale your programs while implementing them across all sites. As a result, your employees will be healthier, happier, and less likely to quit due to dental issues.

What is Root Planning?

Root planning is the process of assessing each person’s risk factors and developing a plan to improve periodontal health. It includes identifying signs and symptoms of periodontal disease, monitoring any changes in the mouth, and treating any lesions. Systematic root planning is a critical component to scaling your periodontal program because it helps to identify at-risk patients early on. By identifying risk factors, you can create a systematic root plan with an individualized care plan for each person.

How to Plan for Scaling and Root Planning?

It sounds like a daunting task to start scaling your periodontal program, but there are many ways you can do it. One way to plan for scaling is to introduce a dental oral health coordinator (DOHC) at each site. The DOHC would work on-site and coordinate the implementation of an integrated oral health program across all sites. This person would be responsible for making sure that the entire organization has access to the necessary resources and information required to implement their programs at all locations.

Another way to scale your programs is by implementing them in phases. For example, if you have three different office sites, you can initially implement your programs at one site per phase before moving onto another site. Doing so will ensure that employees know what’s expected of them in order to reduce risk factors associated with periodontal disease. If anything changes or if something doesn’t go right, you’ll also be able to identify problems early on and make adjustments accordingly before they spread.

Identify the Right Data Points for Root Planning

When you’re scaling your organization’s periodontal health efforts, it can be difficult to know what data points to focus on. What are the most important metrics? This question is common among leaders who are scaling across their organization, not just in one location.

The answer is that all of the data points are important – they help you understand and address risk factors at different levels, so no single metric should be your focus. The key is starting with a few metrics that you can measure across all sites and then adding other metrics as you develop benchmarks for those initial metrics. In doing so, you will identify gaps in your program and areas where you need to add more resources or change strategies.

Define Your Success Metric(s)

Before you can begin root planing and scaling your periodontal programs, it’s important to define what success looks like for your organization. What do you want to see happen? How many people need to be treated before you’re satisfied? Is this a global program or one that will only operate in certain regions? You also need to set a timeline for how long the program will run.

How long does it take for someone to have periodontitis? How often is it recommended that they come back for another treatment with their dentist? Do you want them to come back every three months or once a year if their teeth are healthy? Determining these questions will help you determine what your success metrics are and how often people should be checked.

Determine which sites need what type of hygiene practices.

One of the first steps in program planning is to determine which sites need what type of hygiene practices. For example, one site may need to focus on a different type of hygiene than another site. The key is to strategically plan your programs and offer a variety of hygiene practices that address the needs at each site. Determine what the needs are for each site and then develop the appropriate number of programs that meet those needs. –

If you have more than 100 employees, you’ll want to offer a full range of oral health programs to ensure that risk factors are reduced across all levels and grades. -If your organization has an average population size, you might offer two or three types of oral health programs depending on the needs at your sites.

Decide who will be at what site and when.

The first step in implementing a periodontal program is to identify the site and the employee who will implement the program. This could be an oral health coordinator or someone else with the necessary expertise. Once you’ve identified this person, ask them to use your handbook as a template for creating their own site-specific plan.

Each site should have its own dental plan that includes information on how to schedule and communicate with employees, what equipment will be needed at each site, and who to contact when things go wrong. You can also create a system-wide program by identifying key sites and implementing some of these plans across all sites. The best way to ensure success is by planning out your programs before scaling them across your organization!


Scheduling a root planning visit is the first step to scaling and maintaining your periodontal health. In this article, we discussed how to plan for root planning and the importance of data points for success. We also covered how to identify the right sites for scaling and root planning, as well as how to determine the right hygiene practices for your specific sites. These tips will help you keep your gum health on track!


1-Periodontal health

First published: 21 June 2018

2-Use of chlorhexidine chip after scaling and root planning on periodontal disease: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Accepted 1 November 2020, Available online 11 November 2020, Version of Record 30 December 2020.

3-Behavioural considerations for hand hygiene practices: the basic building blocks

Available online 4 December 2006.

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