Periodontics

Periodontal Treatment

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection of the gums and bones within the mouth.  It is considered a “silent” disease because there is usually no pain associated with it. We take periodontal disease very seriously and do everything in our power to educate our patients on their part in keeping periodontal disease from showing up.  The best way to avoid periodontal disease is to practice good oral hygiene and visit us regularly.

Individuals that have poor oral hygiene, smoke/chew tobacco, have a family history of periodontal disease, are pregnant, have heart disease or diabetes, or take certain drugs are at a higher risk for developing periodontal disease.

Stages of Periodontal Disease

The two major stages of periodontal disease:

Gingivitis

This is the mild form of periodontal disease as it only affects the gums. Signs of gingivitis include red, swollen gum and bleeding when brushing or flossing.  If gingivitis is caught early on and properly treated, it can be reversed. However, if left untreated it can progress to periodontitis.

Periodontitis

This is a more advanced form of periodontal disease. At this point, bacteria have penetrated deeper into your tissues and affect the bones support your teeth. If left untreated, it can lead to serious health problems, tooth mobility, and ultimate tooth loss.

We will regularly check the condition of your gum and bony tissues.  In doing so, we will determine what type of cleaning you need and how frequently you should have your teeth cleaned.  In some cases, we may recommend a scaling and root planning procedure (a deep cleaning) if we see signs of periodontal disease.  This procedure often involves getting the involved areas numb for your comfort, because during the deep cleaning we clean both above and below the gum line to thoroughly removed as much of the bacteria and tartar build-up as we can.  Adjunctive tools such as locally-placed antibiotics or antimicrobial rinses may be used to eliminate the bacteria that cannot be physically removed.  If after all of these preliminary measures have been taken the tissues do not improve the way we hope, surgical treatment may then be necessary.  We will discuss all of these avenues with you as the need arises.

What can you do to prevent periodontal disease?

  • Brush your teeth at least 2 times a day for at least 2-3 minutes.  Focus not only on the teeth themselves but also the gum tissues.  Place your tooth brush at the area where the gums and the teeth meet and brush gently using soft, circular motions.  Focus on 1-2 teeth at a time and remember…BE GENTLE!  No need to scrub!  Harder does not mean better.  Brushing too hard can lead to other problems.
  • Remember to floss.  Once a day is all that we ask.  We recommend flossing at night, to help remove all the build-up that’s been accumulating all day long.  Ask us how…we’ll show you how it’s done!
  • Don’t forget to brush your tongue every time you brush your teeth.
  • Mouthwashes are a great tool to add to your oral hygiene regimen.
  • The best care is in your hands, but remember to see us regularly as well.  We ask that you to come see us every 3 months to every 6 months.

 

 

 

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