Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is a leading cause of tooth loss in adults. Mainly caused by plaque bacteria, it is usually painless in the early stages. Regular dental visits are essential to maintaining gum health and timely diagnosis and treatment when needed.


Stages of Periodontal Disease

The earlier you treat periodontal disease, the easier it is to control, and the better chance you have of restoring the health of your mouth and saving your teeth.

Gingivitis: The earliest stage of gum disease, often characterized by bleeding, tenderness, swelling and redness of the gums. A toothpaste or mouth rinse may be used to help reduce bleeding and inflammation for mild gingivitis.

Periodontitis: A more advanced stage of gum disease involving bone and ligament surrounding the teeth. If left untreated, it can damage the bone and supporting tissues. Your gum separates from the tooth and the bone level deteriorates.

Advanced Periodontitis: Further progression of periodontitis with major loss of bone support. Your gums recede farther and separate. Pus may develop, bone loss continues and your teeth may loosen or fall out.

Treatments

Your dentist will examine you for periodontal disease during each routine checkup. A periodontal probe will be used to determine if there is any breakdown in the gum tissue attachment or if pockets have developed between your gums and teeth.

Treatment will depend upon the type of periodontal disease and how far the condition has progressed. Treatment can either be non-surgical or surgical in nature

Non-Surgical Therapy
 

  •     Scaling - removing the calculus deposits from your teeth
  •     Root planing - smoothing of the root surfaces so that the gum tissue can reattach to the tooth.


Surgical Therapy
 

  •     Gingivectomy - involves removing an over growth of gum tissue. Removing excess gum tissue eliminates the space in which bacteria can grow.
  •     Flap surgery - allows us to gain access to the root of the tooth for removal of calculus, plaque and diseased tissue.The gum is then secured back into place.


Prevention

Good periodontal health starts with the patient. Here's what you can do to prevent or control gum disease:
 

  •     Brush and floss your teeth everyday.
  •     Eat well-balanced meals and avoid sugary, "junk food" snacks.
  •     Examine your mouth for any early signs of gum disease.
  •     Visit your dentist at least twice a year for a thorough cleaning and oral examination.