Deep cleaning is actually called scaling and root planing and is done to treat the early stages of gum disease, which are infections in the gums and the bones that hold your teeth in place. If you do not have insurance or if your insurance does not cover this procedure, you will have to pay the fee out of pocket. Before agreeing on a price with your dentist, you should first make sure you are being charged a fair price, especially if you are on a budget.
During a routine checkup, dentists on occasion use a periodontal probe to check the depth of each space---or pocket---between the gums and teeth. They measure in millimeters and anything three millimeters or less is considered healthy. If however, you measure four or five millimeters in several of these pockets, your dentist will suggest a deep cleaning.
During a scaling and root planing, a dentist or periodontist will either use an instrument called a scaler or ultrasonic cleaner to remove all the tarter and plaque under the gums. The rough spots are then planed---or smoothed out. This cleaning process is preventing serious gum disease. If however, you allow your gum disease to go untreated and progress to more severe stages, the bones that hold your teeth in place will become damaged. Your teeth will then either fall out, or you will need to have them removed.
Your mouth is divided into four quadrants: right maxillary quadrant, left maxillary quadrant, right mandibular quadrant and the left mandibular quadrant. You may need one, two, three or all quadrants cleaned scaled and planed. Local anesthetic is usually given since the procedure can be painful. Fortunately, the cost of deep cleaning is per quadrant, so you only pay for what you need done.
The average costs of deep cleaning is between $100-to-$400 per quadrant. This means that if you are getting all four areas scaled and planed, it can cost you as little as $400 or as much as $1,600. About how much you will pay depends on where you live. If you live in an area where the cost of living is higher, such as New York City or Chicago, then expect to pay much more than someone living where the cost of living is lower like Arkansas or Indiana.
Call around to different dentists and periodontists. The administrative assistant or billing agent who answers the phone should give you a clear-cut answer as to how much they charge per quadrant. Call at least three-to-five different offices to determine the average price in your area.