How Much Does Scaling & Root Planing Cost? Financing Options

Clinical Content Reviewed by Dr. Jay Khorsandi, DDS
Last Modified:

Table of Contents

  1. Scaling & Root Planing Specifics
  2. Scaling & Root Planing Expenses
  3. Aftercare
  4. Payment & Financing Options

The cost of scaling and root planing varies widely. The exact cost will depend on how extensive the procedure needs to be, who performs it, and your geographical location. Costs can range from under $100 to over $1,000.

Scaling and root planing can be at least partially covered through insurance. There are often financing options to help pay for out-of-pocket costs as well.

Specifics of Scaling & Root Planing

Gum disease is common, impacting 47.2 percent of the adult population, ages 30 and older, in the United States.

Periodontal disease, or gum disease, occurs when tartar forms on your teeth after plaque builds up and hardens. This can extend to the base of your teeth under the gumline. When this occurs, you will need to have it cleaned out by a dental professional. This is often accomplished through scaling and root planing.

Scaling and root planing is a two-part deep cleaning process. Scaling involves using a specialized hook tool (which can be done manually, with an ultrasonic device, or by using both) to remove the hardened tartar and plaque from all the way under your gums.

Root planing smooths out the root of your teeth to help the gums attach more firmly to the teeth again and keep plaque from collecting on the rough edges. Depending on the severity of the gum disease, scaling and root planing may need to be done in more than one session. Sometimes, it may require anesthetic medication.

Scaling & Root Planing Expenses

The cost of scaling and root planing generally ranges between $200 and $300 for a small area, but the final cost can vary greatly based on:

  • The location of the area that needs treatment.

  • The severity of the periodontal disease and extent of the treatment needed.

  • The specific office and dental professional performing the procedure. Periodontists will typically be more expensive than dentists.

  • Geographical area.

  • Medications needed.

Scaling and root planing is a form of dental teeth cleaning. It involves going deeper than a traditional cleaning, and it is a more extensive process.

If you have already exceeded your dental insurance's yearly maximum, you will be required to pay more than what is typically covered.

If you have already exceeded your dental insurance yearly maximum, you will be required to pay more than what is typically covered.


Depending on the severity of your gum disease, you may need more than one session of scaling and root planing to remove all the tartar. Your dentist may also need to use a local anesthetic to numb the area. If you are prone to periodontal disease, a professional deep cleaning may be recommended at least once or twice per year.

With extensive periodontal disease, medications may be placed in the pocket of your gum to be released in a controlled fashion over time. This will help to manage and treat the infection.

Your dentist will need to see you for a follow-up visit to ensure that your gums are reattaching nicely to your teeth, the swelling is going down, and the infection is under control.

Payment & Financing Options

Scaling and root planing is often considered a medically necessary procedure to treat extensive gum disease. As a result, it is generally covered by dental insurance.

Dental insurance coverage amounts will depend on your specific policy, plan, and provider. Scaling and root planing is often covered at about 50 percent. This means that you will be responsible for the other half of the cost.

Dental insurance can help to cut your costs for scaling and root planing, but there may be limitations on coverage. Often, claims are not allowed for more than one treatment per year. A dental discount plan can help to offset out-of-pocket costs if you use specific in-network providers.

Additional methods for financing scaling and root planing include payment plans and financing options offered by the provider specifically. Most dental and periodontal offices will have an option to spread out your payments to make scaling and root planing fit within your budget.

Disclaimer: This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to serve as dental or other professional health advice and is not intended to be used for diagnosis or treatment of any condition or symptom. You should consult a dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.