FIGHTING GUM DISEASE WITH PERIODONTAL THERAPY
Gum disease, which is the second most common dental health issue among adults today (next to tooth decay/cavities), is a serious concern for many reasons. Not only is it the leading cause of adult tooth loss, but it can also increase your risks of certain systemic health issues, like heart disease. The connection lies in your body’s response to oral bacteria that incite excessive inflammation. In your gums, this inflammation can lead to serious tissue damage. As a result, periodontal therapy may be your best chance at fighting gum disease and preserving your smile.
Signs to Look For
Gum disease occurs when oral bacteria (the microbes that form dental plaque) grow and multiply along your gum line and release toxic substances that irritate the tissues. As more bacteria gather, they can result in a gum infection (gingivitis), which causes a number of symptoms that can warn you of its presence, including:
- Redness in your gum tissues
- Swelling and occasional bleeding
- Increasingly stronger bad breath
- Slight tenderness in your gums
- Darkening/changing colors in your gum tissues
- Loose teeth (as it progresses)
What is Periodontal Therapy?
If we notice these or other signs of gingivitis or gum disease during your routine dental checkup and cleaning, then immediate treatment may be necessary to prevent extensive damage to your gums and oral health. Periodontal therapy involves restoring the health of your gums to reduce the chances of severe gum disease and tooth loss. In many cases, treatment will include a deep periodontal cleaning, also known as scaling and root planing.
The procedure entails carefully cleaning bacteria from underneath your gums, where they’ve accumulated on your roots. After the area is sanitized, we can smooth the roots to discourage bacteria from gathering in the future, allowing your gums the chance to heal and reattach to your teeth. A strict routine of good hygiene and regular dental care will be needed to ensure that your gums remain healthy, and to better protect your oral health in the long-term.