Same as our teeth, our gums also need good care and attention to remain sound and free from any diseases. Lack of gum care or proper oral hygiene can cause severe damage to the gums, and the condition is called gum disease or periodontal disease. If left untreated for long, gum disease can lead to tooth and bone loss besides other systemic health conditions like stroke, diabetes, heart disease, etc.
Gum disease is a severe, reoccurring bacterial infection that forms around our gums and the supporting bones. Most times, the condition occurs due to the lack of proper brushing and flossing, causing plaque buildup in the mouth along the gumline. When the harmful bacteria in the plaque causes gum infections, inflammation and soft-tissue damage can happen. If the condition is left untreated for long, it can advance to severe stages, during which jawbone deterioration and eventual tooth loss can occur.
Symptoms of Periodontal disease
- Redness and severe bleeding of the gum
- Discharge of pus from the gums
- Darkening of the gums
- Receding gum line, exposing more teeth
- Deeper gum pockets
- Jawbone deterioration
- Teeth, loosening from their sockets
- Severe bad breath
How Do We Treat Periodontitis at River Family Dentistry?
At River Family Dentistry, we treat gum disease based on the severity of the condition. The treatment usually happens in several stages. They are:
- Oral Cleaning: We use special dental equipment called an ultrasonic scaler to remove the plaque and tartar accumulated above and beyond the gum line and down to the bottom of the periodontal pocket. Root planing procedure involves smoothing out of the teeth roots that help the reattachment of the gums to the teeth. Both scaling and root planing treatments are different types of deep cleaning procedures that eliminate harmful bacteria from the teeth and prevent the toxins from affecting the soft tissues, thus allowing them to heal.
- Laser Therapy: This treatment involves the removal of the decayed tissues to prevent the spread of infection to the neighboring tissues. In the past years, this procedure was performed through a surgical procedure. However, with advancements in dentistry, laser therapy is used to remove decayed tissues by using a dental laser beam which will sublimate the tissues and seal the injury beneath.
- Medication: Antibiotic medication like Arestin is placed beneath the gums or given as consumable pills to treat the gum infection and eliminate the microbes.
- Gum Graft: Gum graft is a surgical procedure that helps replenish the volume of gums lost due to gum disease. The healthy gum tissues from the palate or a different area of the mouth are extracted and grafted to the receded area during the procedure. The grafted tissues are allowed to fuse with the current ones and are allowed to heal.
If you would like to learn more about gum disease treatment, call River Family Dentistry at