Periodontal disease, or gum disease, can be a problematic dental and overall health problem that can lead to infection, tooth loss and destruction of vital tissues in the mouth. The disease starts with a mild form of the disease, known as gingivitis, which is a build-up of plaque between the teeth and gums. This plaque build-up causes inflammation, redness and irritation around the gums.
If treated early, gingivitis is easily reversed with professional care from your dentist. If allowed to progress, however, gingivitis leads to a more advanced state of the disease, which begins to damage the inner layer of the gums and bone around the infected area. The body’s natural response to fight the infection is to break down the tissues that are affected, causing bone and soft tissues to deteriorate.
There are a number of causes of periodontal disease, including hormonal changes, illness, poor dental hygiene, family history, smoking or tobacco use or use of certain medications that are known to affect one’s oral health. The treatments too are vast, ranging from minor, non-surgical treatments to more robust, surgical procedures. The type of treatment needed will depend on the severity of your disease.
Here are a few of the periodontal disease treatments we offer:
For minor or less advanced stages of periodontal disease, such as gingivitis, non-surgical treatments can treat the disease, sometimes within a single visit. Here are some non-surgical treatments for periodontal disease:
For milder cases of periodontal disease, plaque and tartar can be removed during a routine or scheduled professional teeth cleaning. During this cleaning, your dentist will use special tools to scrape and clean all traces of plaque and tartar from hard-to-reach places in your mouth.
This non-surgical procedure, which is completed under a local anesthetic, involves scraping away rough spots on the tooth’s root below the gum line, and smoothing out its surface to prevent bacterial buildup in the gum pocket.
When periodontal disease is allowed to progress, surgical treatments may be necessary. Here are some of the surgical treatment options to treat periodontal disease:
When gum pockets are deep, disease-causing bacteria is given an easy place to reside and fester. To reduce these pockets, your dentist may complete a surgical procedure that involves removing the tartar from these gum pockets, then replacing your gums more snugly around the tooth, eliminating the spaces where bacteria likes to grow.
Bone and tissue grafts are surgical procedures that stimulate the regeneration of bone and soft tissue in one’s mouth by taking tissue from another place on a person’s body, such as the soft tissue from the roof of one’s mouth or fragments of real or synthetic bone tissue, to add tissue to the affected area.
This surgical procedure is often done in conjunction with pocket reduction, or gum flap, surgery to stimulate tissue growth around the gum pocket. During this procedure, a medical mesh-like material is inserted between the bone and gum tissue to guide tissue growth and limit it to a specific area.
Bone surgery for periodontal disease involves smoothing out shallow craters on the bone that have formed from bone loss. After flap surgery, the bone is reshaped to decrease the craters, making it more difficult for bacteria to gather and multiply.
If you suffer from periodontal disease and are in need of treatment, contact our office today to schedule your initial consultation with us, where we will go over your options and come up with the best treatment plan for your distinct situation.