Periodontal Therapy 101: Everything You Need to Know

Our teeth have soft tissue and bone that support their function and position. With proper care, these tissues can offer a lifetime of support and preserve the teeth. However, poor dental hygiene can affect the health and stability of these tissues and bone. Plaque buildup causes the bacteria in the mouth to colonize the gums and cause irritation. That’s why the dentists recommend proper oral hygiene practices and regular teeth cleaning.

Periodontal disease progresses in stages, from gingivitis to periodontitis. Gingivitis is the first stage, and left untreated can lead to periodontitis. Usually, in the early stages, gum disease can be treated with proper hygiene. As the infection advances, however, we may recommend periodontal therapy.

Why is Periodontal Therapy Done?

Periodontal therapy can stop the progression of infection, reattach the gums, reduce the deep pockets, prevent tooth extraction, and preserve your teeth and dental health.

How Can You Tell You Need Periodontal Treatment?

As aforementioned, gum disease develops in stages, and both have similar symptoms. In the initial stages, you will notice bad breath, bleeding, tender, swollen, and dark gums. As the condition advances, the symptoms will worsen and include receding gums and bones, loose teeth, continual lousy breath, gum that easily bleed, and pus accumulation.

Visit our dentist as soon as you notice tender and bleeding gums. It is easy to reverse periodontal disease with early treatment.

What Can You Expect During Your Dental Appointment?

When you come for treatment, the dentist will examine your dental health to determine the severity of the gum disease. Your gum pockets are also measured, and x-ray imaging is done to check for bone loss.

What Treatment Options Are Available?

In the early stages, non-invasive procedures may suffice. Some of the treatments include:

• Root scaling and planningm

Root scaling and planning are two procedures combined into one to treat periodontal disease. Scaling, a non-surgical procedure, involves the removal of the tartar accumulation above and below the gum line. The gum pockets will be cleaned off bacteria, debris, and toxins. Next, root planning is done to reattach the gum to teeth. You may need more than one dental visit, depending on the stage of gum disease.

After the procedure, you will experience sensitivity for a few days. You may also have swollen, tender, and bleeding gums, but the dentist will give you Medication to control pain and prevent infection.

• Medication

Antibiotics such as mouth rinses, insertion gels, and oral antibiotics can help reduce the risk of infection.

In advanced gum disease, treatments may involve:

• Gum graft

A gum graft is a surgical procedure done to correct gum recession that occurs in advanced stages. Receding of the gums is a gradual process, and some people may not recognize it when it happens. However, with time the roots will become exposed and cause tooth sensitivity and, eventually, tooth loss. That’s why getting regular dental checkups is recommended.

Several gum graft techniques are available, and the dentist will choose one depending on the severity and extent of the damage. The dentist can perform:

  • Free gingival grafts
  • Connective tissue graft
  • Pedicle grafts

Tissue-stimulating protein can also be used to encourage natural bone and tissue growth.

• Bone graft

Bone grafting is done if the gum disease destroyed your bone. The procedure involves using small fragments of bone either from your body or cadaver. The bone granules help to prevent further bone loss as well as promote new growth.

How to Prevent Gum Disease?

  • Get regular dental cleaning to remove tartar buildup
  • Stop smoking
  • Brush and floss your teeth possibly with an electric toothbrush to get rid of food particles
  • Reduce stress
  • Maintain proper nutrition to help fight the immune system
  • Use mouthguards to manage the effects of teeth grinding and clenching

Get Treatment

Periodontitis is preventable with proper hygiene, and seeking early treatment is important. Therefore, visit us at the B&G Family Dentistry clinic if you notice tender, bleeding, and swollen gums. With appropriate treatment, we can reverse the effects of gum disease and prevent tooth extraction.

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