PERIODONTAL DISEASE, Gum Disease – Diagnosis, Treatment, & Care

What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease (gum disease) is a condition that effects a large portion of the population. It is a disease that causes pockets or spaces in the gum tissue, allowing bacteria to enter. The build up of plaque causes the gums to become inflamed and form pockets around the teeth. Normal brushing cannot reach this build up and over time the pockets continue to get deeper. Symptoms may include bad breath, red and puffy gums, bleeding gums and loose or sensitive teeth. If left untreated, inflammation can spead to other areas of the body, including your heart, and has been linked to premature birth, complicates diabetes, and other systemtic health problems.

Diagnosis: Gingivitis is the beginning stages of periodontal (gum) disease. Bleeding when brushing is a sign of this, as is inflammation and tenderness. We will measure between the tooth and gums to determine the depth of any pockets that may be present.

Treatment: Gingivitis and gum disease must be treated to prevent further destruction of teeth, gums, and bone, which can eventually lead to tooth loss. Depending on the extent of the disease, a deep cleaning and scaling will be recommended and will typically be done with local numbing. When the build up has been removed from below the gum line, the tissue will heal in a short time.

Maintenance: Follow-up appointments will be recommended to keep an eye on the healing progress. Medicated rinses, consistent flossing and using an electric toothbrush are some of the home treatments suggested for gum disease follow-up. We will discuss a thorough in-home follow-up care program for you.