Periodontal Cleaning Costs: What to Expect & How to Save Money

Learn about the cost of periodontal cleaning in this detailed article. Discover factors that affect pricing, average costs, and tips to save money.

Joel Wissen

6/24/20237 min read

The Importance of Good Oral Health

As we all know, taking care of our teeth and gums is essential to maintaining good overall health. Poor oral hygiene can lead to a wide range of issues, from bad breath and cavities to gum disease and even more serious conditions like heart disease.

That's why it's crucial that we stay on top of our dental health by brushing and flossing regularly, as well as visiting the dentist for routine checkups. One important aspect of maintaining good oral health is getting regular cleanings.

While most people are familiar with standard dental cleanings, which involve removing plaque and tartar from the surface of the teeth, fewer are aware of periodontal cleaning. This type of cleaning is necessary when gum disease is present and involves removing bacteria from underneath the gums to prevent further damage.

What is Periodontal Cleaning?

Periodontal cleaning (also known as scaling and root planing) is an intensive form of dental cleaning designed to treat gum disease. Gum disease occurs when bacteria accumulate along the gumline, causing inflammation that can eventually lead to tooth loss if left untreated.

Periodontal cleaning involves carefully scraping away plaque and tartar from beneath the gums to remove bacteria and promote healing. This type of cleaning typically takes longer than a standard dental cleaning - often up to two hours - because it requires meticulous attention to detail.

In some cases, local anesthesia may be used to ensure patient comfort during the procedure. While periodontal cleaning can be uncomfortable in the short term, it's an important step in preventing further damage caused by gum disease.

The Cost Factor

While regular cleanings are usually covered by insurance plans or cost between $75-$200 per visit without insurance coverage per visit depending on one’s location; periodontal cleanings are a bit more expensive than regular cleanings and can cost anywhere from $500-$10,000 depending on the severity of gum disease and location. The reality is that periodontal cleanings are necessary for good dental health, so it’s important to understand what factors contribute to the cost and how to budget for this type of treatment.

Why is It Important?

If you want to maintain healthy teeth and gums, you need to make sure you're getting periodontal cleanings regularly along with regular dental cleanings. Along with preventing gum disease, periodontal cleaning can also help prevent other health problems such as heart attacks or strokes.

The procedure also helps protect against loose teeth or bone loss due to untreated gum disease. Your dentist will often recommend periodontal cleaning if they notice any signs of early-stage gum disease during a routine checkup.

Comparison to Regular Dental Cleaning

While regular dental cleanings focus on removing plaque from the surface of your teeth above the gum line (where brushing alone cannot reach), periodontal cleanings are a more extensive process that removes buildup below the gum line as well. During a regular dental cleaning, a hygienist will use tools such as scalpels, mirrors, probes or picks to remove any visible buildup on the surface of your teeth.

In contrast, during a periodontal cleaning (also known as scaling and root planing), special instruments are used to remove calculus from deep pockets around your teeth where bacteria thrive. Overall, while both types of cleanings are important for maintaining good oral health, periodontal cleaning is more extensive and essential for preventing gum disease.

Factors that Affect the Cost of Periodontal Cleaning

Severity of Gum Disease: Determining the Extent of Damage

The severity of your gum disease is one of the main factors that will determine the cost of your periodontal cleaning. A dentist will examine your gums to assess how far along the gum disease has progressed.

There are four stages, with each stage requiring progressively more extensive treatment. For example, if you have gingivitis, which is characterized by mild inflammation and bleeding gums, you'll likely only need a basic cleaning.

On the other hand, if you have advanced periodontitis, which involves significant bone loss and deep pockets around your teeth, more invasive procedures such as laser therapy or scaling and root planing may be required. These procedures can be expensive due to their complexity and require specialized equipment.

Location and Reputation: The Role They Play in Pricing

Location is another factor that can impact the cost of periodontal cleaning. Dental clinics located in urban areas typically charge more than those located in rural areas due to higher overhead costs such as rent, salaries for staff members, and other expenses associated with operating a business in a city.

Additionally, dental clinics that are highly regarded for their expertise on treating gum disease may charge more than others due to their reputation. It's essential to do some research before selecting a dental clinic for your periodontal cleaning procedure.

Look up reviews online or ask for recommendations from friends or family members who have had similar procedures done in the past. Don't assume that paying more automatically translates into better service or results – sometimes reputable clinics offer affordable pricing options without sacrificing quality care.

Insurance Coverage: What You Need to Know

Insurance coverage also plays an important role in determining how much you'll pay out-of-pocket for your periodontal cleaning. Most dental insurance policies cover basic cleanings and some periodontal work, but the extent of coverage varies widely depending on the plan you have. If you're not covered by insurance or your policy doesn't cover periodontal cleaning, ask your dentist if they offer payment plans or financing options.

Some dental clinics offer in-house financing, while others partner with third-party companies that specialize in dental financing. These options can help make the procedure more affordable and manageable for you and your budget.

Average Cost Range for Periodontal Cleaning

Periodontal cleaning, also known as deep cleaning, is a dental procedure that is more intensive than regular teeth cleaning. This means that it generally costs more than standard cleaning procedures.

The national average cost for a basic periodontal cleaning in the United States falls between $140 to $300 per quadrant (a quarter of your mouth). However, these costs can vary depending on the location and reputation of the dental clinic you visit.

In addition to the basic cost range, there are additional expenses for more severe cases of periodontal disease. For instance, if you need scaling and root planing (deep cleaning below your gum line), it could cost anywhere from $110 to $350 per quadrant.

Gum surgery or flap surgery may be needed in severe cases where pockets have developed within your gums that require surgical removal by cutting them out. These surgeries can range from $500 to $10,000 depending on how complex they are.

Additional Costs for More Severe Cases

It's important to note that additional costs may arise if you have severe gum disease. In this case, multiple treatments may be necessary and could come with additional expenses such as X-rays or antibiotics prescribed by your dentist.

These extra treatments can add up quickly and become quite costly. It's important to prioritize your oral health because untreated gum disease can lead to tooth loss and even other health concerns such as heart disease or stroke.

This underscores the importance of scheduling regular cleanings with your dentist because early detection and treatment of gum disease may save you money in the long run compared to waiting until it becomes more advanced. Periodontal cleaning is a critical aspect of maintaining good oral hygiene, but it comes at an added expense.

The exact cost will vary based on several factors including severity of gum disease and location/reputation of the dental clinic but expect to pay anywhere from $140 to $300 per quadrant for basic periodontal cleaning. Additional treatments such as scaling and root planing or gum surgery can increase these costs, so it's important to prioritize your oral health and schedule regular cleanings with your dentist.

Tips on How to Save Money on Periodontal Cleaning

Look for dental clinics with special offers or promotions.

If you're looking to save money on periodontal cleaning, one of the best ways is to look for dental clinics with special offers or promotions. Many clinics offer discounted rates or special packages for new patients, so it's worth doing some research to see what's available in your area.

You can start by checking out the websites of local dentists and seeing if they have any current deals advertised. Another good option is to sign up for email newsletters from dental clinics.

Many practices will send out periodic emails with news about their services, as well as special promotions and discounts. By subscribing, you'll be one of the first to know about any deals that might be available.

Check if your insurance covers periodontal cleaning.

Another way to save money on periodontal cleaning is by checking if your insurance covers it. If you have dental insurance, it's possible that some or all the cost of periodontal cleaning will be covered under your plan.

Be sure to check with your provider to find out exactly what services are covered and how much you'll need to pay out-of-pocket. If your insurance doesn't cover periodontal cleaning, you may still be able to get some financial assistance through a dental discount plan.

These plans work like membership clubs and provide discounted rates at participating dentists and clinics. They can be a good option if you don't have insurance but still want access to affordable dental care.

Consider a payment plan if necessary.

If all else fails, consider setting up a payment plan with your dentist or clinic. Many practices offer financing options that allow patients to pay for treatments over time rather than upfront in a lump sum.

While this may result in paying slightly more over the long term due to interest charges, it can be a good way to manage the cost of periodontal cleaning if you don't have the funds available upfront. When considering a payment plan, be sure to read the terms and conditions carefully.

Make sure you understand how much you'll need to pay each month, as well as any interest charges or other fees that may apply. Ask questions if anything is unclear so that you can make an informed decision about whether a payment plan is right for you.


We've discussed everything you need to know about the cost of periodontal cleaning. We've learned that it's an important procedure for maintaining good oral health, especially for those with gum disease. The cost can vary depending on several factors, including the severity of the disease and location of the clinic.

There are ways to save money on periodontal cleaning, such as looking for special offers or checking your insurance coverage. Overall, it's crucial to prioritize regular dental cleanings and checkups to maintain good oral health.

Ignoring gum disease can lead to more severe problems down the line that can be even more costly. With a little bit of research and planning, you can find affordable options for periodontal cleaning without sacrificing quality care.

Remember: investing in your oral health now will save you time and money in the long run. Don't hesitate to reach out to your dentist if you have any questions or concerns about periodontal cleaning or any other dental procedure.