Much like High Blood Pressure, Periodontal (Gum) Disease is a "silent" disease. Most people do not know they have gum disease until their teeth become loose and fall out. Gum disease is a very serious disease of the mouth and it is the #1 reason adults lose their teeth.
Recent research has shown a direct correlation between periodontal disease and systemic health. Links have been shown with gum disease and an increase risk of stroke, heart attack, diabetic complications, and serious problems with pregnancy.
Signs of Gum Disease
- Gums bleed while flossing
- Red, swollen, painful gums- especially when brushing or during a teeth cleaning
- Gum recession- gum tissue pulls away from the teeth
Gum Disease is a problem for your jaw bone as well as your teeth. As the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth a pocket is created for bacteria to enter. These bacteria can cause bad breath but more importantly it can eat away at the bone of your jaw and tooth causing the tooth to become loose. This can lead to tooth loss and infection.
To treat the Bacterial Infection and Gum Disease, maintaining good oral health is key. Regular visits to your dentist for cleanings, x-rays and checkups are vital to keeping a healthy mouth. You cannot do this alone. It takes a team effort.
Periodontal treatment can be used for the early and moderate stages of periodontal disease. Sometimes referred to as a "Deep Cleaning" this treatment involves removing the plaque and calculus (tartar) that has formed under the gum - In the area known as the gingival sulcus, or pocket, and smoothing the root surfaces of the teeth.
Local anesthesia is typically used to assure comfort during treatment. The area is then treated with medication such as antibiotics or antibacterial agents.
The goal of Periodontal Treatment is to bring the gums back to good health by shrinking or eliminating the pockets around the teeth that are the site of infection. We recommend good brushing and flossing at home as well as follow up visits every 3 months to help the gum tissue and the bacterial infection heal.
Periodontal Disease is a chronic condition and without continued treatment the infection and disease will recur. Each time it does, more bone is lost and the potential loss of teeth is higher.
We want to work with you as a team to heal your gums and preserve the bone of your teeth and jaw. We look forward to seeing you every 3 months for Periodontal Maintenance cleanings. We can discuss your progress at each visit and our hygienist can provide you with feed-back about the extent and depth of the pockets around your teeth. We will work together to tackle this chronic condition.
Contact us for more information about Gum Care.