What is Gum Disease?
Gum (periodontal) disease occurs when the supporting tissues of the teeth become infected. It's typically caused by poor oral hygiene habits that cause buildup of plaque on the teeth. The plaque hardens, and eventually affects the gums.
Left untreated, gum disease can lead to several oral health issues including a receding gum line, inflamed or bleeding gums, pockets between the teeth filling with bacteria, and eventual bone loss.
Gum Disease Therapy
Depending on the type and severity of the disease, your periodontist's recommendations for periodontal treatment methods may vary. The periodontist will work with you to develop a treatment plan based on your specific circumstances.
Once you've completed your periodontal treatment, our periodontist will recommend that you come in for regularly scheduled dental exams and preventive therapy, usually four times a year.
- Preventive Gum Therapy
If the disease is detected in its early stages, preventive therapy will be recommended.
Regular hygiene cleanings and examinations are essential for maintaining gum health.
By practicing excellent at-home oral hygiene and eating a balanced diet, you can also significantly decrease your chances of getting gum disease.
- Non-Surgical Gum Therapy
A deep cleaning performed by a dental hygienist may be enough to reverse mild forms of gum disease.
The dental hygienist will remove plaque and tartar surrounding and below the gum line, and smooth out any remaining rough areas through a process referred to as scaling and root planing.
- Surgical Gum Therapy
More invasive surgical treatments may be necessary to reverse more advanced forms of gum disease.
Different types of surgical gum therapy include bone grafting and gum grafting.
Cosmetic Gum Therapy
If your gums rest too low or too high on your teeth and you are unhappy with your smile, you may be a candidate for gum grafting surgery. This cosmetic dental procedure can help to even out an uneven gum line and reduce the perceived length of the teeth to give you a smile you can be proud of.
Placing Dental Implants
Periodontics also includes the placement of dental implants beneath the gum line as part of the process to replace missing teeth. Once a dental implant is placed, the gums have healed, and a tooth replacement is added, this procedure can provide a number of oral health benefits.