Gum disease is an infection of the gum tissue surrounding the teeth. Over time, plaque buildup can turn into tartar and cause the gums to become red, swollen, and tender. If left untreated, the disease can progress into periodontitis, which can damage the tissues and bones that support your teeth.
How Is Gum Disease Treated?
Different stages of gum disease require different treatments. For example, when your gum disease is in its early stages, professional cleaning may be all you need. However, when gum disease progresses, you may need more intensive therapy. At-home treatments can be used between visits to help keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy. These include:
Brushing your teeth twice a day for two minutes at a time with toothpaste that contains fluoride and a soft-bristled toothbrush
Flossing at least once a day or as recommended by your dentist
Rinsing with an antimicrobial mouthwash daily to fight bacteria
Scheduling regular checkups and cleanings to monitor and treat gum disease
If your gum disease has advanced to periodontitis, you may need to undergo regular periodontal scaling and root planing procedures. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary.
What Are Scaling and Root Planing?
The early stage of gum disease is called gingivitis. If left untreated, gum disease can lead to periodontitis, which is an infection that affects the soft tissues and bones that support the teeth. Scaling and root planing is a deep cleaning procedure that removes plaque and tartar from below the gum line and prevents future buildup from occurring. It can be performed in the dental office by a dentist using special instruments or an ultrasonic device. It helps restore the health of the gum tissue so it can function normally again and prevent further issues.
What Involves in Periodontal Surgery?
To restore gum health, a dentist may recommend any of the following treatments that can be performed in our office or referred to another specialist for treatment:
Pocket reduction surgery: This procedure involves folding gum tissue over areas where tooth roots are exposed to prevent food particles and bacteria from causing irritation and inflammation.
Soft tissue grafting: This treatment is used to restore both form and function of the gums after they have been receding due to periodontal disease. Tissue from the roof of the mouth is stitched to the gums to cover the area where tissues have been lost.
Bone grafts: Bone replacement grafts are often required if the jawbone has deteriorated to the point that teeth cannot be supported in their proper positions. Grafts can be taken either from another area of the jaw or from a tissue bank to place on the damaged areas of the jaw.
Each of these procedures can have a dramatic impact on the health of your gums if performed early enough in the progression of gum disease. However, even the most advanced stages of gum disease can be treatable with professional intervention!
To learn more about our dental services or schedule a consultation, call Dentist in Woodstock, GA, at (470) 601-7888 or visit Park Creek Dental Care at 8080 Hickory Flat Hwy, Woodstock, GA 30188.