periodontal instruments

Dr. Rawand Samy Mohamed Abu Nahla
Oral Medicine, periodontology&oral Radiology
Dr. Haydar.A.Shafy Faculty Of Dentistry.
El Azhar University.
Periodontal instruments
•Periodontal instruments are designed for specific purposes
such as removing calculus, planning root surfaces, curetting
the gingiva, and removing diseased tissue.
•On first investigation, the variety of instruments available for
similar purposes appears confusing. With experience, however,
clinicians select a relatively small set that fulfills all
• Classification of Periodontal Instruments
• Periodontal instruments are classified according to the purposes they serve, as follows:
• 1. Periodontal probes are used to locate, measure, and mark pockets, as well as determine their course on individual
tooth surfaces.
• 2. Explorers are used to locate calculus deposits and caries.
• 3. Scaling, root-planning, and curettage instruments are used for removal of biofilm and calcified deposits from the
crown and root of a tooth, removal of altered cementum from the subgingival root surface, and debridement of the
soft tissue lining the pocket. Scaling and curettage instruments are classified as follows:
• • Sickle scalers are heavy instruments used to remove supragingival calculus.
• • Curettes are fine instruments used for subgingival scaling, root planning, and removal of the soft tissue lining
the pocket.
• • Hoe, chisel, and file scalers are used to remove tenacious subgingival calculus and altered cementum. Their use is
limited compared with that of curettes.
• • Ultrasonic and sonic instruments are used for scaling and cleansing tooth surfaces and curetting the soft tissue
wall of the periodontal pocket.
• 4. Periodontal endoscopes are used to visualize deeply into subgingival pockets and furcation's, allowing the detection
of deposits.
• 5. Cleansing and polishing instruments, such as rubber cups, brushes, and dental tape, are used to clean and polish
tooth surfaces. Also available are air-powder abrasive systems for tooth polishing.
•The wearing and cutting qualities of some types of steel used in
periodontal instruments have been tested, but specifications vary among
manufacturers. Stainless steel is used most often in instrument
manufacture. High-carbon-content steel instruments are also available
and are considered by some clinicians to be superior.
•Each group of instruments has characteristic features; individual
therapists often develop variations with which they operate most
effectively. Small instruments are recommended to fit into periodontal
pockets without injuring the soft tissues.
•The parts of each instrument are referred to as the working end,
shank, and handle (Figure 46-1). 1 Parts of a typical periodontal
1. Periodontal Probes
• Periodontal probes are used to measure the depth of pockets and to
determine their configuration. The typical probe is a tapered, rod like
instrument calibrated in millimeters, with a blunt, rounded tip (Figure 46-2).
There are several other designs with various millimeter calibrations (Figure
• The World Health Organization (WHO) probe has millimeter markings
and a small, round ball at the tip (Figure 46-3, E). Ideally, these probes are
thin, and the shank is angled to allow easy insertion into the pocket.
Furcation areas can best be evaluated with the curved, blunt Nabers probe
(Figure 46-4).
2 Periodontal probe is composed of the handle, shank, and calibrated working end.
3 Types of periodontal probes. A, ball at the tip and millimeter markings at 3.5, 8.5, and
11.5 mm and color coding from 3.5 to 5.5 mm. Marquis color-coded probe. Calibrations are
in 3-mm sections. B, University of North Carolina-15 probe, a 15-mm long probe with
millimeter markings at each millimeter and color coding at the fifth, tenth, and fifteenth
millimeters. C, University of Michigan “O” probe, with Williams markings (at 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8,
9, and 10 mm). D,Michigan “O” probe with markings at 3, 6, and 8 mm.
Organization (WHO) probe, which has a 0.5-mm
World Health
FIGURE 46-4 Curved #2 Nabers probe for detection of furcation areas, with color-coded
markings at 3, 6, 9, and 12 mm.
When measuring a pocket, the probe is inserted with a firm, gentle pressure to the bottom of the pocket. The shank
should be aligned with the long axis of the tooth surface to be probed. Several measurements are made to determine
the level of attachment along the surface of the tooth.
2. Explorers
• Explorers are used to :
1. locate subgingival deposits and carious areas
2. check the ksmoothness of the root surfaces after root planning.
3. The periodontal probe can also be useful in the detection of
subgingival deposits (Figure 46-6, D).
• Explorers are designed with different shapes and angles, with
various uses (Figure 46-5), as well as limitations (Figure 46-6).
5 Five typical explorers.
EXD 11-12;
6 Insertion of two types of explorers and a periodontal probe in a pocket
for calculus detection. A, The limitations of the pigtail explorer in a deep
pocket. B, Insertion of the #3 explorer. C, Limitations of the #3
explorer. D, Insertion of the periodontal probe.
Scaling and Curettage Instruments
• Scaling and curettage instruments are illustrated in Figure 46-7
Sickle Scalers.
• Sickle scalers have a flat surface and two cutting edges that converge in a sharply pointed tip.
The shape of the instrument makes the tip strong so that it will not break off during use (Figure 46-8).
• The sickle scaler is used primarily to remove supragingival calculus (Figure 46-9).
• Because of the design of this instrument, it is difficult to insert a large sickle blade under the gingiva without damaging the surrounding
gingival tissues (Figure 46-10).
• Small, curved sickle scaler blades such as the 204SD can be inserted under ledges of calculus several millimeters below the gingiva.
Sickle scalers are used with a pull stroke.
• It is important to note that sickle scalers with the same basic design can be obtained with different blade sizes and shank types to adapt to
specific uses. The U15/30 (Figure 46-11), Ball, and Indiana University sickle scalers are large.
The Jaquette sickle scalers #1, 2, and 3 have medium-size blades. The curved 204 posterior sickle scalers are available with large, medium,
or small blades (Figure 46-12).
• The Montana Jack sickle scaler and the Nevi 2, Nevi 3, and Nevi 4 curved posterior sickle scalers are all thin enough to be inserted several
millimeters subgingivally for removal of light to moderate ledges of calculus. The selection of these instruments should be based on the area
to be scaled.
• Sickle scalers with straight shanks are designed for use on anterior teeth and premolars. Sickle scalers with contra-angled shanks adapt to
posterior teeth.
The five basic scaling instruments. A, Curette; B, sickle; C, file; D, chisel; E, hoe.
Basic characteristics of a sickle scaler: triangular shape, double-cutting edge,
and pointed tip.
FIGURE 46-9 Use of a sickle scaler for removal of supragingival calculus.
FIGURE 46-10 Subgingival adaptation around the root is better with the curette than with the
sickle; f, facial; l, lingual.
As shown in Figure 46-10, the curved blade and rounded toe of the curette allow the blade to adapt better to
the root surface, unlike the straight design and pointed end of a sickle scaler, which can cause tissue laceration
and trauma. There are two basic types of curettes: universal and area specific.
FIGURE 46-11
Both ends of a U15/30 scaler.
FIGURE 46-12
Three different sizes of 204 sickle scalers.
The curette is the instrument of choice for removing deep subgingival calculus, root planning altered cementum, and removing the soft tissue lining the periodontal pocket (Figure 46-13).
Each working end has a cutting edge on both sides of the blade and a rounded toe. The curette is finer than the sickle scalers and does not have any sharp points or corners other than the
cutting edges of the blade (Figure 46-14).
Therefore curettes can be adapted and provide good access to deep pockets, with minimal soft tissue trauma (see Figure 46-10).
In cross-section, the blade appears semicircular with a convex base. The lateral border of the convex base forms a cutting edge with the face of the semicircular blade.
There are cutting edges on both sides of the blade. Both single- and double-end curettes may be obtained, depending on the preference of the operator.
Universal Curettes.
Universal curettes have cutting edges that may be inserted in most areas of the dentition by altering and adapting the finger rest, fulcrum, and hand position of the operator. The blade size
and the angle and length of the shank may vary, but the face of the blade of every universal curette is at a 90-degree angle (perpendicular) to the lower shank when seen in cross-section from the
tip (Figure 46-15, A).
The blade of the universal curette is curved in one direction from the head of the blade to the toe. The Barnhart curettes #1-2 and 5-6 and the Columbia curettes #13-14, 2R-2L, and 4R-4L
(Figures 46-16 and 46-17, A) are examples of universal curettes. Other popular universal curettes are the Younger-Good #7-8, McCall’s #17-18, and the Indiana University #17-18 (Figure 46-17, B).
Area-Specific Curettes
Gracey Curettes.
Gracey curettes are representative of the area-specific curettes, a set of several instruments designed and angled to adapt to specific anatomic areas of the dentition (Figure 46-18).
These curettes and their modifications are probably the best instruments for subgingival scaling and root planning because they provide the best adaptation to complex root anatomy.
Single-ended Gracey curettes can also be obtained; a set of these curettes comprises 14 instruments. Although these curettes are designed to be used in specific areas, an experienced operator
can adapt each instrument for use in several different areas by altering the position of his or her hand and the position of the patient.
• The Gracey curettes also differ from the universal curettes in that the blade is not at a 90-degree angle to the lower shank.
• The term offset blade is used to describe Gracey curettes because they are angled approximately 60 to 70 degrees from the lower shank (see Figure 46-15, B).
• This unique angulation allows the blade to be inserted in the precise position necessary for subgingival scaling and root planning, provided that the lower shank is parallel with the long axis
of the tooth surface being scaled.
• Area-specific curettes also have a curved blade. Whereas the blade of the universal curette is curved in one direction (Figure 46-21, A), the Gracey blade is curved from head to toe and also
along the side of the cutting edge (Figure 46-21, B).
• Thus only a pull stroke can be used. Table 46-1 lists some of the major differences between Gracey (area-specific) curettes and universal curettes.
• Gracey curettes are available with either a “rigid” or a “finishing” type of shank. The rigid Gracey has a larger, stronger, and less flexible shank and blade than the standard finishing Gracey.
• The rigid shank allows the removal of moderate to heavy calculus without using a separate set of heavy scalers, such as sickles and hoes.
• Although some clinicians prefer the enhanced tactile sensitivity that the flexible shank of the finishing Gracey provides, both types of Gracey curettes are suitable for root planning.
• Recent additions to the Gracey curette set have been the Gracey #15-16 and 17-18. The Gracey #15-16 is a modification of the standard #11-12 and is designed for the mesial surfaces of posterior
teeth (Figure 46-22).
• It consists of a Gracey #11-12 blade combined with the more acutely angled #13-14 shank. When the clinician is using an intraoral finger rest, it is often difficult to position the lower shank of
the Gracey #11-12 so that it is parallel with the mesial surfaces of the posterior teeth, especially on the mandibular molars.
The new shank angulation of the Gracey #15-16 allows better adaptation to posterior mesial surfaces from a front position with intraoral rests. If alternative fulcrums, such as extraoral or
opposite-arch rests, are used, the Gracey #11-12 works well and the new #15-16 is not essential.
The Gracey #17-18 is a modification of the #13-14. It has a terminal shank elongated by 3 mm and a more accentuated angulation of the shank to provide complete occlusal clearance and
better access to all posterior distal surfaces. The horizontal handle position minimizes interference from opposing arches and allows a more relaxed hand position when scaling distal
surfaces. In addition, the blade is 1 mm shorter to allow better adaptation of the blade to distal tooth surfaces.
Extended-Shank Curettes.
Extended-shank curettes, such as the After Five curettes (Hu-Friedy, Chicago), are modifications of the standard Gracey curette design.
The terminal shank is 3 mm longer, allowing extension into deeper periodontal pockets of 5 mm or more (Figures 46-23 and 46-24).
Other features of the After Five curette include a thinned blade for smoother subgingival insertion and reduced tissue distention and a large-diameter, tapered shank.
All standard Gracey numbers except for the #9-10 (i.e., #1-2, #3-4, #5-6, #7-8, #11-12, or #13-14) are available in the After Five series.
The After Five curettes are available in finishing or rigid designs. For heavy or tenacious calculus removal, rigid After Five curettes should be used. For light scaling or deplaqing in a
periodontal maintenance patient, the thinner, finishing After Five curettes will insert sub gingivally more easily.
Mini-Bladed Curettes.
Mini-bladed curettes, such as the Hu-Friedy Mini Five curettes, are modifications of the After Five curettes. The Mini Five curettes feature blades that are half the length of the After Five or
standard Gracey curettes (Figure 46-25). The shorter blade allows easier insertion and adaptation in deep, narrow pockets; furcation's; developmental grooves; line angles; and deep, tight, facial,
lingual, or palatal pockets.
In any area in which root morphology or tight tissue prevents full insertion of the standard Gracey or After Five blade, the Mini Five curettes can be used with vertical strokes, with reduced
tissue distention, and without tissue trauma (Figure 46-26).
• In the past the only solution in most of these areas of difficult access was to use the Gracey curettes with a toe-down horizontal
• The Mini Five curettes, along with other short-bladed instruments relatively recently introduced, open a new chapter in the history
of root instrumentation by allowing access to areas that previously were extremely difficult or impossible to reach with standard
• The Mini Five curettes are available in both finishing and rigid designs. Rigid Mini Five curettes are recommended for calculus
• The more flexible, shanked, finishing Mini Five curettes are appropriate for light scaling and deplaqing in periodontal
maintenance patients with tight pockets.
• As with the After Five series, the Mini Five curettes are available in all standard Gracey numbers, except the #9-10.
• The recently introduced Micro Mini Five Gracey curettes (Hu-Friedy, Chicago) have blades that are 20% thinner and smaller than
the Mini Five curettes (Figures 46-27 and 46-28) These are the smallest of all curettes, and they provide exceptional access and
adaptation to tight, deep, or narrow pockets; narrow furcations; developmental depressions; line angles; and deep pockets on
facial, lingual, or palatal surfaces
In areas in which root morphology or tight, thin tissue prevents easy insertion of other mini-bladed curettes, the Micro Mini Five
curettes can be used with vertical strokes without causing tissue distension or tissue trauma.
• The Gracey Curvettes are another set of four mini-bladed curettes; the Sub-0 and the #1-2 are used for anterior teeth and premolars, the #11-12
is used for posterior mesial surfaces, and the #13-14 for posterior distal surfaces. The blade length of these instruments is 50% shorter than that
of the conventional Gracey curette, and the blade has been curved slightly upward (Figure 46-29). This curvature allows the Gracey Curvettes
to adapt more closely to the tooth surface than any other curettes, especially on the anterior teeth and on line angles (Figure 46-30).
• However, this curvature also carries the risk of gouging or “grooving” into the root surfaces on the proximal surfaces of the posterior teeth
when the Gracey Curvette #11-12 or 13-14 is used. Additional features that represent improvements on the standard Gracey curettes are a
precision-balanced blade tip in direct alignment with the handle, a blade tip perpendicular to the handle, and a shank closer to parallel with
the handle.
• Langer and Mini-Langer Curettes.
• The Langer and Mini Langer curettes are a set of three curettes combining the shank design of the standard Gracey #5-6, 11-12, and 13-14
curettes with a universal blade honed at 90 degrees rather than the offset blade of the Gracey curette.
• This marriage of the Gracey and universal curette designs allows the advantages of the area-specific shank to be combined with the
versatility of the universal curette blade.
• The Langer #5-6 curette adapts to the mesial and distal surfaces of anterior teeth; the Langer #1-2 curette (Gracey #11-12 shank) adapts to the
mesial and distal surfaces of mandibular posterior teeth; and the Langer #3-4 curette (Gracey #13-14 shank) adapts to the mesial and distal
surfaces of maxillary posterior teeth (Figure 46-32).
• These instruments can be adapted to both mesial and distal tooth surfaces without changing instruments.
The standard Langer curette shanks are heavier than a finishing Gracey but less rigid than the rigid Gracey. Langer curettes are also
available with either rigid or finishing shanks and can be obtained in the extended-shank (After Five) and mini-bladed (Mini Five) versions.
FIGURE 46-13
The curette is the instrument of choice for subgingival scaling and root planning.
FIGURE 46-14
Basic characteristics of a curette: spoon-shaped blade and rounded tip.
Principal types of curettes as seen from the toe of the
instrument. A, Universal curette. B, Gracey curette. Note the offset
blade angulation of the Gracey curette.
FIGURE 46-15
Double-ended curette for the removal of subgingival calculus. B, Cross-section of the curette
blade (arrow) against the cemental wall of a deep periodontal pocket. C, Curette in position at the base of a
periodontal pocket on the facial surface of a mandibular molar. D, Curette inserted in a pocket with the
tip directed apically. E, Curette in position at the base of a pocket on the distal surface of the mandibular
46-16 A,
Columbia #4R-4L universal curette. B, Younger-Good
#7-8, McCall’s #17-18, and Indiana University #17-18 universal
FIGURE 46-17 A,
FIGURE 46-18
Reduced set of Gracey curettes. Left to right, #5-6, #7-8, #11-12, and #13-14.
Double-ended Gracey curettes are paired in the following manner:
Gracey #1-2 and 3-4: Anterior teeth
Gracey #5-6: Anterior teeth and premolars
Gracey #7-8 and 9-10: Posterior teeth: facial and lingual
Gracey #11-12: Posterior teeth: mesial (Figure 46-19)
FIGURE 46-19
the shank.
Gracey #11-12 curette. Note the double turn of
FIGURE 46-20
Gracey #13-14 curette. Note the acute turn of the blade.
Gracey #13-14: Posterior teeth: distal (Figure 46-20)
Universal curette as seen from the blade. Note that the blade is straight. B, Gracey
curette as seen from the blade. The blade is curved; only the convex cutting edge is used.
FIGURE 46-21 A,
TABLE 46-1
Comparison of Area-Specific (Gracey) and Universal Curettes
Gracey Curette
Area of use
Universal Curette
Set of many curettes designed for
specific areas and surfaces.
One curette designed for all areas and
One cutting edge used; work with outer
edge only.
Both cutting edges used; work with
either outer or inner edge.
Curved in two planes; blade curves up
and to the side.
Curved in one plane; blade curves up,
not to the side.
Blade angle
Offset blade; face of blade beveled at
60 degrees to shank.
Blade not offset; face of blade beveled
at 90 degrees to shank.
Cutting Edge
Gracey Curette
Universal Curette
Cutting Edge
One cutting edge
used; work with
outer edge only.
Both cutting edges
used; work with
either outer or inner
Curved in two
planes; blade curves
up and to the side.
Curved in one plane;
blade curves up, not
to the side.
Blade angle
Offset blade; face of
blade beveled at 60
degrees to shank.
Blade not offset;
face of blade
beveled at 90
degrees to shank.
Modified from Pattison G, Pattison A: Periodontal instrumentation, ed 2, Norwalk, CT, 1992, Appleton & Lange.
Gracey #15-16. New Gracey curette, designed for mesio
posterior surfaces, combines a Gracey #11-12 blade with a Gracey #13-14
shank. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-22
After Five curette. Note the extra 3 mm in the terminal
shank of the After Five curette compared with the standard Gracey
curette. A, #5-6; B, #7-8; C, #11-12; D, #13-14. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-23
Comparison of After Five curette with standard Gracey curette. Rigid Gracey #1314 adapted to the distal surface of the first molar and rigid After Five #13-14 adapted to the
distal surface of the second molar. Notice the extra-long shank of the After Five curette,
which allows deeper insertion and better access. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-24
Comparison of After Five curette and Mini Five
curette. The shorter Mini Five blade (half the length)
allows increased access and reduced tissue trauma.
FIGURE 46-25
Comparison of standard rigid Gracey #5-6 with rigid Mini Five #5-6 on the palatal surfaces of the
maxillary central incisors. Mini Five curette can be inserted to the base of these tight anterior pockets and used
with a straight vertical stroke. Standard Gracey or After Five curette usually cannot be inserted vertically in
this area because the blade is too long. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-26
FIGURE 46-27
Micro Mini Five Gracey curettes. Left to right, #1-2, #7-8, #11-12, #13-14.
Comparison of Gracey curette blades. Left to right, Micro Mini Five
#7-8, Mini Five #7-8, Standard #7-8
FIGURE 46-28
Gracey Curvette blade. This diagram shows the 50%
shorter blade of the Gracey Curvette superimposed on the
standard Gracey curette blade (dotted lines). Notice the upward
curvature of the Curvette blade and blade tip. (Redrawn from Pattison G, Pattison
URE 46-29
A: Periodontal instrumentation, ed 2, Norwalk, Conn, 1992, Appleton & Lange.)
Gracey Curvette Sub-0 on the palatal surface of a maxillary central incisor.
The long shank and short, curved, and blunted tip make this a superior instrument
for deep anterior pockets. This curette provides excellent blade adaptation to the
narrow root curvatures of the maxillary and mandibular anterior teeth. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-30
For many years, the Morse scaler, a miniature sickle, was the only mini-bladed instrument available. However, the
mini-bladed curettes have largely replaced this instrument (Figure 46-31).
Comparison of three different mini-bladed instruments designed for use on
the maxillary and mandibular anterior teeth. A, Hu-Friedy Mini Five #5-6; B, Hu-Friedy
Curvette Sub-0; C, Hartzell Sub-0. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-31
Langer curettes combine Gracey-type shanks with universal curette
blades. Left to right, #5-6, #1-2, and #3-4. (© A. Pattison)
FIGURE 46-32
• Schwartz Periotrievers.
• The Schwartz Periotrievers are a set of two double-
ended, highly magnetized instruments designed for
the retrieval of broken instrument tips from the
periodontal pocket (Figures 46-33 and 46-34). They
are indispensable when the clinician has broken a
curette tip in a furcation or deep pocket.
Schwartz Periotriever tip designs. The
long blade is for general use in pockets, and
the contra-angled tip is for use in
furcations. (From Pattison G, Pattison A: Periodontal instrumentation, ed
2, Norwalk, CT, 1992, Appleton & Lange.)
Broken instrument tip
attached to the magnetic tip of the
Schwartz Periotriever. (From Pattison G, Pattison
A: Periodontal instrumentation, ed 2, Norwalk, CT, 1992, Appleton & Lange.)
• Plastic and Titanium Instruments for Implants.
• Several different companies are manufacturing plastic and
titanium instruments for use on titanium and other implant
abutment materials. It is important that plastic or titanium
instruments be used to avoid scarring and permanent
damage to the implants* (Figures 46-35, 46-36, and 46-37).
FIGURE 46-35
Plastic probe: Colorvue (Hu-Friedy, Chicago).
New Implacare II implant instruments (Hu-Friedy, Chicago) These
implant instruments have
FIGURE 46-36
autoclavable stainless steel handles and five different cone-socket plastic tip designs. Shown here:
A. New Barnhart 5-6 curette tips B. New Langer 1-2 curette tips
Titanium Implant Curettes (Paradise Dental Technologies,
Missoula, MT). Left to right, Barnhart #5-6, Langer #1-2, and NEB 128B-L5
FIGURE 46-37
• Hoe Scalers.
• Hoe scalers are used for scaling of ledges or rings of calculus (Figure
46-38). The blade is bent at a 99-degree angle; the cutting edge is
formed by the junction of the flattened terminal surface with the inner
aspect of the blade.
• The cutting edge is beveled at 45 degrees.
• The blade is slightly bowed so that it can maintain contact at two
points on a convex surface.
• The back of the blade is rounded, and the blade has been reduced to
minimal thickness to permit access to the roots without interference
from the adjacent tissues.
Hoe scalers designed for different tooth surfaces, showing “two-point” contact. B, Hoe
scaler in a periodontal pocket. The back of the blade is rounded for easier access. The instrument
contacts the tooth at two points for stability.
FIGURE 46-38 A,
Hoe scalers are used in the following manner:
1. The blade is inserted to the base of the periodontal pocket so that it makes two-point contact with the tooth (see Figure 4638). This stabilizes the instrument and prevents nicking of the root.
2. The instrument is activated with a firm pull stroke toward the crown, with every effort being made to preserve the twopoint contact with the tooth.
McCall’s #3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 are a set of six hoe scalers designed to provide access to all tooth surfaces. Each instrument has a
different angle between the shank and handle.
• Files.
• Files have a series of blades on a base (Figure 46-39). Their
primary function is to fracture or crush large deposits of
tenacious calculus or burnished sheets of calculus. Files can easily
gouge and roughen root surfaces when used improperly.
Therefore they are not suitable for fine scaling and root planning.
Mini-bladed curettes are currently preferred for fine scaling in
areas where files were once used. Files are sometimes used for
removing overhanging margins of dental restorations.
FIGURE 46-39
Chisel scaler (A) and file scaler (B).
• Chisel Scalers.
• The chisel scaler, designed for the proximal surfaces of teeth too closely
spaced to permit the use of other scalers, is usually used in the anterior
part of the mouth. It is a double-ended instrument with a curved shank
at one end and a straight shank at the other (see Figure 46-39); the blades
are slightly curved and have a straight cutting edge beveled at 45
• The chisel is inserted from the facial surface. The slight curve of the
blade makes it possible to stabilize it against the proximal surface,
whereas the cutting edge engages the calculus without nicking the tooth.
The instrument is activated with a push motion while the side of the
blade is held firmly against the root.
• Quétin Furcation Curettes.
• The Quétin furcation curettes are actually hoes with a shallow, halfmoon radius that fits into the roof or floor of the furcation. The
curvature of the tip also fits into developmental depressions on the
inner aspects of the roots. The shanks are slightly curved for better
access, and the tips are available in two widths (Figure 46-40). The
BL1 (buccal-lingual) and MD1 (mesial-distal) instruments are small and
fine, with a 0.9-mm blade width. The BL2 and MD2 instruments are
larger and wider, with a 1.3-mm blade width.
FIGURE 46-40
Quétin furcation curettes: BL2 (larger) and BL1 (smaller). (© A. Pattison)
These instruments remove burnished calculus from recessed areas of the furcation where curettes, even the
mini-bladed curettes, are often too large to gain access. Using mini-bladed Gracey curettes and Gracey
Curvettes in the roof or floor of the furcation may unintentionally create gouges and grooves. The Quétin
instruments, however, are well suited for this area and lessen the likelihood of root damage.
• Diamond-Coated Files.
• Diamond-coated files are unique instruments used for
final finishing of root surfaces.
• These files do not have cutting edges; instead, they are
coated with very-fine-grit diamond (Figure 46-41).
• The most useful diamond files are the buccal-lingual
instruments, which are used in furcations and also
adapt well to many other root surfaces.
Diamond files. A, #1,2 (Brasseler,
(Brasseler). C, SDCN 7, SDCM/D 7. (© A. Pattison)
• New diamond files are sharply abrasive and should be used with light,
even pressure against the root surface to avoid gouging or grooving.
• When viewing the root surface with the dental endoscope after all tactilely
detectable deposits are gone, small embedded remnants of calculus in the
root surface can be observed.
• Diamond files are used similar to an emery board to remove these minute
remnants of calculus from the root, creating a surface that is free of all
visible accretions.
• Diamond files can produce a smooth, even, clean, and highly polished root
•Diamond files must be used carefully because they can
cause over instrumentation of the root surface. They will
remove too much root structure if they are used with
excessive force, are poorly adapted to root morphology, or
used too long in one place.
•Diamond files are particularly effective when used with the
dental endoscope, which reveals residual deposits and
directs the clinician to the exact area for instrumentation.
•Ultrasonic and Sonic Instruments.
• Ultrasonic instruments may be used for
removing plaque, scaling, curetting, and
removing stain.
• Dental Endoscope.
• A dental
subgingivally in the diagnosis and treatment of periodontal
disease (Figure 46-42). The Perioscopy system (Perioscopy,
Inc., Oakland, CA) consists of a 0.99-mm-diameter, reusable
fiberoptic endoscope over which is fitted a disposable, sterile
sheath. The fiberoptic endoscope fits onto periodontal probes
and ultrasonic instruments that have been designed to accept
it (Figure 46-43).
• The sheath delivers water irrigation that flushes the pocket
while the endoscope is being used, keeping the field clear.
The fiberoptic endoscope attaches to a medical-grade
charged-coupled device (CCD) video camera and light
source that produces an image on a flat-panel monitor for
• This
subgingival pockets and furcation's (Figure 46-44).
• It permits operators to detect the presence and location of
subgingival deposits and guides them in the thorough removal of
these deposits.
• Magnification ranges from 24 to 48 times, enabling visualization of
even minute deposits of plaque and calculus. Using this device,
operators can achieve levels of root debridement and cleanliness that
are much more difficult or impossible to produce without it.
• The Perioscopy system can also be used to evaluate subgingival
areas for caries, defective restorations, root fractures, and resorption.
FIGURE 46-42
Perioscopy system, dental endoscope. (Courtesy Perioscopy Incorporated, Oakland, CA.)
Viewing periodontal explorers (left/right/full
viewing) for the Perioscopy system. (Courtesy Perioscopy Incorporated, Oakland,
FIGURE 46-43
Perioscopic instrumentation permits deep
subgingival visualization in pockets and furcations. (Courtesy
Perioscopy Incorporated, Oakland, CA.)
• Cleansing and Polishing Instruments
• Rubber Cups.
• Rubber cups consist of a rubber shell with or without webbed
configurations in the hollow interior (Figure 46-45). They are used in
the handpiece with a special prophylaxis angle. The handpiece,
prophylaxis angle, and rubber cup must be sterilized after each
patient use, or a disposable plastic prophylaxis angle and rubber cup
may be used and then discarded (Figure 46-46).
•A good cleansing and polishing paste that contains fluoride
should be used and kept moist to minimize frictional heat as the
cup revolves. Polishing pastes are available in fine, medium, or
coarse grits and are packaged in small, convenient, single-use
containers. Aggressive use of the rubber cup with any abrasive
may remove the layer of cementum, which is thin in the cervical
FIGURE 46-45
Metal prophylaxis angle with rubber cup and brush.
FIGURE 46-46
Disposable plastic prophylaxis angle with rubber cup and with brush.
• Bristle Brushes.
• Bristle brushes are available in wheel and cup shapes
(see Figure 46-45). The brush is used in the prophylaxis angle
with a polishing paste. Because the bristles are stiff, use of the
brush should be confined to the crown to avoid injuring the
cementum and the gingiva.
• Dental Tape.
• Dental tape with polishing paste is used for polishing proximal
surfaces that are inaccessible to other polishing instruments.
• The tape is passed interproximally while being kept at a right
angle to the long axis of the tooth and is activated with a firm
labiolingual motion. Particular care is taken to avoid injury to the
• The area should be cleansed with warm water to remove all
remnants of paste.
• Air-Powder Polishing.
• The first specially designed handpiece to deliver an airpowered slurry of warm water and sodium bicarbonate for
polishing was introduced in the early 1980s.
• This device, called the Prophy-Jet(Dentsply International,
York, PA) is very effective for the removal of extrinsic
stains and soft deposits (Figure 46-47).
• The slurry removes stains rapidly and efficiently by mechanical
abrasion and provides warm water for rinsing and lavage.
• The flow rate of abrasive cleansing power can be adjusted to
increase the amount of powder for heavier stain removal.
Currently, many manufacturers produce air-powder polishing
systems that use various powder formulas.
• FIGURE 46-47 Cavitron Prophy Jet air-powder polishing device. (Courtesy Dentsply
International, York, PA.)
• The results of studies on the abrasive effect of the air-powder polishing devices using
sodium bicarbonate and aluminum trihydroxide on cementum and dentin show that
significant tooth substance can be lost. Damage to gingival tissue is transient and
insignificant clinically, but amalgam restorations, composite resins, cements, and other
nonmetallic materials can be roughened. Polishing powders containing glycine rather than
sodium bicarbonate recently have been introduced for subgingival biofilm removal from
root surfaces. Air-powder polishing can be used safely on titanium implant surfaces.
• Patients with medical histories of respiratory illnesses and hemodialysis are not
candidates for the use of the air-powder polishing device. Powders containing
sodium bicarbonate should not be used on patients with histories of hypertension,
sodium-restricted diets, or medications affecting the electrolyte balance.
• Patients with infectious diseases should not be treated with this device because of
the large quantity of aerosol created.
• A preprocedural rinse with 0.12% chlorhexidine gluconate should be used to
minimize the microbial content of the aerosol. High-speed evacuation should also be
used to eliminate as much of the aerosol as possible.
• General Principles of Instrumentation
• Effective instrumentation is governed by a number of general principles that are
common to all periodontal instruments. Proper position of the patient and the operator,
illumination and retraction for optimal visibility, and sharp instruments are
fundamental prerequisites.
• A constant awareness of tooth and root morphologic features and of the condition of
the periodontal tissues is also essential. Knowledge of instrument design enables the
clinician to select the proper instrument for the procedure and the correct area in which
it will be performed. In addition to these principles, the basic concepts of grasp, finger
rest, adaptation, angulation, and stroke must be understood before clinical instrumenthandling skills can be mastered.
Accessibility: Positioning of Patient and Operator
Accessibility facilitates thoroughness of instrumentation. The position of the patient and operator should provide maximal accessibility to
the area of operation. Inadequate accessibility impedes thorough instrumentation, prematurely tires the operator, and diminishes his or her
• The clinician should be seated on a comfortable operating stool that has been positioned so that the clinician’s feet are flat on the floor with
the thighs parallel to the floor. The clinician should be able to observe the field of operation while keeping the back straight and the head
• The patient should be in a supine position and placed so that the mouth is close to the resting
elbow of the clinician. For instrumentation of the maxillary arch, the patient should be asked to
raise the chin slightly to provide optimal visibility and accessibility. For instrumentation on the
mandibular arch, it may be necessary to raise the back of the chair slightly and request that the
patient lower the chin until the mandible is parallel to the floor. This will especially facilitate
work on the lingual surfaces of the mandibular anterior teeth.
Visibility, Illumination, and Retraction
Whenever possible, direct vision with direct illumination from the dental light is most desirable (Figure 46-48). If this is not possible, indirect
vision may be obtained by using the mouth mirror (Figure 46-49) and indirect illumination may be obtained by using the mirror to reflect light
to where it is needed (Figure 46-50). Indirect vision and indirect illumination are often used simultaneously (Figure 46-51).
• Retraction provides visibility, accessibility, and illumination. Depending on the location of the area of operation, the fingers and/or the
mirror are used for retraction. The mirror may be used for retraction of the cheeks or the tongue; the index finger is used for retraction of the
lips or cheeks. The following methods are effective for retraction:
• 1. Use of the mirror to deflect the cheek while the fingers of the nonoperating hand retract the lips and protect the angle of the mouth
from irritation by the mirror handle.
• 2. Use of the mirror alone to retract the lips and cheek (Figure 46-52).
• 3. Use of the fingers of the nonoperating hand to retract the lips
• 4. Use of the mirror to retract the tongue
• 5. Combinations of the preceding methods.
• When retracting, care should be taken to avoid irritation to the angles of the mouth. If the lips and skin are dry, softening the lips with
petroleum jelly before instrumentation is a helpful precaution against cracking and bleeding. Careful retraction is especially important for
patients with a history of recurrent herpes labialis because these patients may easily develop herpetic lesions after instrumentation.
FIGURE 46-48
Direct vision and direct illumination in the mandibular left premolar area.
FIGURE 46-49
Indirect vision using the mirror for the lingual surfaces of the mandibular anterior teeth.
Indirect illumination using the mirror to reflect light onto
the maxillary left posterior lingual region.
FIGURE 46-50
Combination of indirect illumination and indirect vision for the
lingual surfaces of the maxillary anterior teeth.
FIGURE 46-51
FIGURE 46-52
Retracting the cheek with the mirror.
3. Use of the fingers of the nonoperating hand to retract the
lips (Figure 46-53).
FIGURE 46-53
Retracting the lip with the index finger of the nonoperating
4. Use of the mirror to retract the tongue (Figure 46-54).
FIGURE 46-54
Retracting the tongue with the mirror
3) Condition and Sharpness of Instruments
• Before any instrumentation, all instruments should be inspected to
make sure that they are clean, sterile, and in good condition. The
working ends of pointed or bladed instruments must be sharp to be
effective. Sharp instruments enhance tactile sensitivity and allow the
clinician to work more precisely and efficiently (see later discussion).
Dull instruments may lead to incomplete calculus removal and
unnecessary trauma because of the excess force usually applied to
compensate for their ineffectiveness.
Maintaining a Clean Field
• Despite good visibility, illumination, and retraction, instrumentation can be hampered if
the operative field is obscured by saliva, blood, and debris. The pooling of saliva interferes
with visibility during instrumentation and impedes control because a firm finger rest
cannot be established on wet, slippery tooth surfaces.
• Adequate suction is essential and can be achieved with a saliva ejector or, if working with
an assistant, an aspirator.
• Gingival bleeding is an unavoidable consequence of subgingival instrumentation. In areas
of inflammation, bleeding is not necessarily an indication of trauma from incorrect
technique but rather may indicate ulceration of the pocket epithelium. Blood and debris
can be removed from the operative field with suction and by wiping or blotting with
gauze squares. The operative field should also be flushed occasionally with water.
• Compressed air and gauze squares can be used to facilitate visual inspection of tooth
surfaces just below the gingival margin during instrumentation. A jet of air directed into
the pocket deflects a retractable gingival margin. Retractable tissue can also be deflected
away from the tooth by gently packing the edge of a gauze square into the pocket with
the back of a curette. Immediately after the gauze is removed, the subgingival area should
be clean, dry, and clearly visible for a brief interval.
5) Instrument Stabilization
• Stability of the instrument and the hand is the primary requisite
for controlled instrumentation. Stability and control are essential
for effective instrumentation and avoidance of injury to the
patient or clinician. The two factors of major importance in
providing stability are the instrument grasp and the finger rest.
• Instrument Grasp.
• A proper grasp is essential for precise control of movements made during periodontal instrumentation. The most effective and
stable grasp for all periodontal instruments is the modified pen grasp(Figure 46-55).
• Although other grasps are possible, this modification of the standard pen grasp (Figure 46-56) ensures the greatest control in
performing intraoral procedures.
• The thumb, index finger, and middle finger are used to hold the instrument as a pen is held, but the middle finger is positioned so
that the side of the pad next to the fingernail is resting on the instrument shank. The index finger is bent at the second joint from the
fingertip and is positioned well above the middle finger on the same side of the handle.
• The pad of the thumb is placed midway between the middle and index fingers on the opposite side of the handle. This creates a
triangle of forces, or tripod effect, that enhances control because it counteracts the tendency of the instrument to turn uncontrollably
between the fingers when scaling force is applied to the tooth.
• This stable modified pen grasp enhances control because it enables the clinician to roll the instrument in precise degrees with the
thumb against the index and middle fingers to adapt the blade to the slightest changes in tooth contour. The modified pen grasp also
enhances tactile sensitivity because slight irregularities on the tooth surface are best perceived when the tactile-sensitive pad of the
middle finger is placed on the shank of the instrument.
• The palm and thumb grasp (Figure 46-57) is useful for stabilizing instruments during sharpening and for manipulating air and water
syringes, but it is not recommended for periodontal instrumentation. Maneuverability and tactile sensitivity are so inhibited by
this grasp that it is unsuitable for the precise, controlled movements necessary during periodontal procedures.
FIGURE 46-55
A. Pattison)
Modified pen grasp. The pad of the middle finger rests on the shank. (©
FIGURE 46-56
Standard pen grasp. The side of the middle finger rests on the shank. (© A. Pattison
FIGURE 46-57
Palm and thumb grasp, used for stabilizing instruments during sharpening. (© A. Pattison)
Finger Rest.
The finger rest serves to stabilize the hand and the instrument by providing a firm fulcrum as movements are made to activate the instrument. A good finger rest prevents injury and
laceration of the gingiva and surrounding tissues by poorly controlled instruments. The fourth (ring) finger is preferred by most clinicians for the finger rest. Although it is possible to use the
third (middle) finger for the finger rest, this is not recommended because it restricts the arc of movement during the activation of strokes and severely curtails the use of the middle finger for
both control and tactile sensitivity.
Maximal control is achieved when the middle finger is kept between the instrument shank and the fourth finger. This “built-up” fulcrum is an integral part of the wrist-forearm action that
activates the powerful working stroke for calculus removal. Whenever possible, these two fingers should be kept together to work as a one-unit fulcrum during scaling and root planning.
Separation of the middle and fourth fingers during scaling strokes results in a loss of power and control because it forces the clinician to rely solely on finger flexing for activation of the
• Finger rests may be generally classified as intraoral finger rests or extraoral fulcrums. Intraoral finger rests on tooth surfaces ideally are established close to the working area. Variations of
intraoral finger rests and extraoral fulcrums are used whenever good angulation and a sufficient arc of movement cannot be achieved by a finger rest close to the working area. The following
examples illustrate the different variations of the intraoral finger rest:
• 1. Conventional: The finger rest is established on tooth surfaces immediately adjacent to the working area (Figure 46-58).
2. Cross-arch: The finger rest is established on tooth surfaces on the other side of the same arch (Figure 46-59).
3. Opposite arch: The finger rest is established on tooth surfaces on the opposite arch (e.g., mandibular arch finger rest for instrumentation on the maxillary arch) (Figure 46-60).
Extraoral fulcrums are essential for effective instrumentation of some aspects of the maxillary posterior teeth. When properly established, they allow optimal access and angulation while
providing adequate stabilization. Extraoral fulcrums are not “finger rests” in the literal sense because the tips or pads of the fingers are not used for extraoral fulcrums as they are for intraoral
finger rests. Instead, as much of the front or back surface of the fingers as possible is placed on the patient’s face to provide the greatest degree of stability.
• The two most common extraoral fulcrums are used as follows:
• 1. Palm up: The palm-up fulcrum is established by resting the backs of the middle and fourth fingers on the skin overlying the lateral aspect of the mandible on the right side of the face
(Figure 46-62).
2. Palm down: The palm-down fulcrum is established by resting the front surfaces of the middle and fourth fingers on the skin overlying the lateral aspect of the mandible on the left side of the
face (Figure 46-63).
• Both intraoral finger rests and extraoral fulcrums may be reinforced by applying the index finger or thumb of the nonoperating hand to the handle or shank of the instrument for added control
and pressure against the tooth.
• The reinforcing finger is usually employed for opposite-arch or extraoral fulcrums when precise control and pressure are compromised by the longer distance between the fulcrum and the
working end of the instrument. Figure 46-64 shows the index finger–reinforced rest, and Figure 46-65 shows the thumb-reinforced rest.
Intraoral conventional finger rest. The fourth finger rests on the
occlusal surfaces of adjacent teeth.
FIGURE 46-58
2. Cross-arch: The finger rest is established on tooth surfaces
on the other side of the same arch (Figure 46-59).
Intraoral cross-arch finger rest. The fourth finger rests on the
incisal surfaces of teeth on the opposite side of the same arch.
FIGURE 46-59
• 3. Opposite arch: The finger rest is established on tooth surfaces
on the opposite arch (e.g., mandibular arch finger rest for
instrumentation on the maxillary arch) (Figure 46-60).
Intraoral opposite-arch finger rest.
The fourth finger rests on the mandibular teeth
while the maxillary posterior teeth are
FIGURE 46-60
FIGURE 46-61 Intraoral finger-on-finger rest. The fourth finger
rests on the index finger of the nonoperating hand.
Extraoral palm-up fulcrum. The backs of the fingers rest on the right lateral
aspect of the mandible while the maxillary right posterior teeth are instrumented.
FIGURE 46-62
Extraoral palm-down fulcrum. The front surfaces of the
fingers rest on the left lateral aspect of the mandible while the maxillary
left posterior teeth are instrumented.
FIGURE 46-63
Index finger-reinforced rest. The index finger is placed on
the shank for pressure and control in the maxillary left posterior
lingual region.
FIGURE 46-64
Thumb-reinforced rest. The thumb is placed on
the handle for control in the maxillary right posterior
lingual region.
FIGURE 46-65
6) Instrument Activation
1. Adaptation.
• Adaptation refers to the manner in which the working end of a
periodontal instrument is placed against the surface of a tooth. The
objective of adaptation is to make the working end of the instrument
conform to the contour of the tooth surface. Precise adaptation must be
maintained with all instruments to avoid trauma to the soft tissues and
root surfaces and to ensure maximum effectiveness of instrumentation.
• Correct adaptation of the probe is quite simple. The tip and side of
the probe should be flush against the tooth surface as vertical strokes
are activated within the crevice. Bladed instruments (e.g., curettes)
and sharp-pointed instruments (e.g., explorers) are more difficult to
adapt. The ends of these instruments are sharp and can lacerate tissue,
so adaptation in subgingival areas becomes especially important. The
lower third of the working end, which is the last few millimeters
adjacent to the toe or tip, must be kept in constant contact with the
tooth while it is moving over varying tooth contours (Figure 46-66).
• Precise adaptation is maintained by carefully rolling the handle of the
instrument against the index and middle fingers with the thumb. This
rotates the instrument in slight degrees so that the toe or tip leads into
concavities and around convexities. On convex surfaces such as line angles,
it is not possible to adapt more than 1 or 2 mm of the working end against
the tooth. Even on what appear to be broader, flatter surfaces, no more than
1 or 2 mm of the working end can be adapted because the tooth surface,
although it may seem flat, is actually slightly curved.
Gracey curette blade divided into three
segments: A, the lower one-third of the blade, consisting of
the terminal few millimeters adjacent to the toe; B, the
middle one-third; and, C, the upper one-third, which is
adjacent to the shank.
If only the middle third of the working end is adapted on a convex surface
so that the blade contacts the tooth at a tangent, the toe or sharp tip will jut
out into soft tissue, causing trauma and discomfort (Figure 46-67).
Blade adaptation. The curette on the left is properly adapted to the
root surface. The curette on the right is incorrectly adapted; the toe juts out,
lacerating the soft tissues.
FIGURE 46-67
•If the instrument is adapted so that only the toe or tip is in
contact, the soft tissue can be distended or compressed by the
back of the working end, also causing trauma and discomfort. A
curette that is improperly adapted in this manner can be
particularly damaging because the toe can gouge or groove the
root surface.
2. Angulation.
• Angulation refers to the angle between the face of a bladed instrument and the tooth
surface. It may also be called the tooth-blade relationship.
• Correct angulation is essential for effective calculus removal. For subgingival insertion of
a bladed instrument such as a curette, angulation should be as close to 0 degree as
possible (Figure 46-68, A). The end of the instrument can be inserted to the base of the
pocket more easily with the face of the blade flush against the tooth. During scaling and
root planing, optimal angulation is between 45 and 90 degrees (Figure 46-68, B). The exact
blade angulation depends on the amount and nature of the calculus, the procedure being
performed, and the condition of the tissue
•Blade angulation is diminished or closed by tilting the lower
shank of the instrument toward the tooth. It is increased or
opened by tilting the lower shank away from the tooth. During
scaling strokes on heavy, tenacious calculus, angulation should
be just less than 90 degrees so that the cutting edge “bites” into
the calculus. With angulation of less than 45 degrees, the cutting
edge will not bite into or engage the calculus properly (Figure 4668, C).
• Instead, it will slide over the calculus, smoothing or
“burnishing” it. If angulation is more than 90 degrees, the
lateral surface of the blade, rather than the cutting edge, will be
against the tooth, and the calculus will not be removed and may
become burnished (Figure 46-68, D). After the calculus has been
removed, angulation of just less than 90 degrees may be
maintained, or the angle may be slightly closed as the root
surface is smoothed with light, root-planing strokes.
Blade angulation. A, 0 degrees: correct angulation for blade
insertion. B, 45 to 90 degrees: correct angulation for scaling and root
planing. C, Less than 45 degrees: incorrect angulation for scaling and root
planing. D, More than 90 degrees: incorrect angulation for scaling and root
planing, correct angulation for gingival curettage.
When gingival curettage is indicated, angulation greater than 90 degrees is
deliberately established so that the cutting edge will engage and remove the
pocket lining (Figure 46-68, D).
FIGURE 46-68
3. Lateral Pressure.
• Lateral pressure refers to the pressure created when force is applied
against the surface of a tooth with the cutting edge of a bladed
instrument. The exact amount of pressure applied must be varied
according to the nature of the calculus and according to whether
the stroke is intended for initial scaling to remove calculus or for
root planing to smooth the root surface.
• Lateral pressure may be firm, moderate, or light. When removing
calculus, lateral pressure is initially applied firmly or moderately and
is progressively diminished until light lateral pressure is applied for
the final root-planing strokes.
• When insufficient lateral pressure is applied for the removal of heavy
calculus, rough ledges or lumps may be shaved to thin, smooth sheets
of burnished calculus that are difficult to detect and remove.
• This burnishing effect often occurs in areas of developmental
depressions and along the cementoenamel junction.
• Although firm lateral pressure is necessary for the thorough removal
of calculus, indiscriminate, unwarranted, or uncontrolled application
of heavy forces during instrumentation should be avoided. Repeated
application of excessively heavy strokes often nicks or gouges the root
• The careful application of varied and controlled amounts of lateral
pressure during instrumentation is an integral part of effective scaling
and root-planing techniques and is critical to the success of both these
4. Strokes.
• Three basic types of strokes are used during
instrumentation: the exploratory stroke, the scaling
stroke, and the root-planing stroke. Any of these basic
strokes may be activated by a pull or a push motion
in a vertical, oblique, or horizontal direction (Figure
46-69). Vertical and oblique strokes are used most
• Horizontal strokes are used selectively on line angles or deep
pockets that cannot be negotiated with vertical or oblique
strokes. The direction, length, pressure, and number of strokes
necessary for either scaling or root planing are determined by
four major factors: (1) gingival position and tone, (2) pocket
depth and shape, (3) tooth contour, and (4) the amount and
nature of the calculus or roughness.
FIGURE 46-69
Three basic stroke directions. A, Vertical; B, oblique; C, horizontal.
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