We provide exceptional periodontal disease treatment. Periodontal disease (sometimes called gum disease or periodontitis) is an infection affecting the bone and tissues surrounding your teeth. Healthy gums are “tight” and pink in color; whereas infected gums turn red, become spongy, and can sometimes cause your teeth to become loose. The disease is caused when bacteria (found in plaque) produces toxins and enzymes that irritate the gums, causing infection and inflammation. Surprisingly, this rarely causes pain.
What most people don’t know is that periodontal disease can be life-threatening. According to the American Dental Association, periodontal (gum) disease has been linked to heart disease, respiratory problems, diabetes, stroke, Alzheimer’s, premature births, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Common symptoms of periodontal disease include:
- Swollen gums
- Dark build-up between teeth
- Bleeding gums when you floss
- Constant bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Decaying teeth
While it is possible for you to detect these signs on your own, usually people who have gum disease don’t know it. For instance, most people just ignore bleeding gums when flossing, but this can actually be a sign of periodontal disease.
We assess the severity of your condition accurately by using a periodontal probe to measure pocket depth. A healthy pocket (around every tooth) is typically 3mm deep or less. The greater the pocket depth, the more severe your periodontal disease. The resulting condition is a deeper and deeper pocket. What ensues is a progressive breakdown of the tissue and bone.
In order to determine the best way to combat the bacteria that are causing gum disease for a specific patient is to determine what bacteria are actually present. We work with partners like OralDNA and Temple University for in-depth microbial testing to look for the root cause of the disease so we can find a permanent solution.
We are fully aware that the daily treatment and removal of oral bacteria and plaque are both key strategies to maintaining a healthy mouth. That is why our Future of Dentistry dentists supply you and your family with proven solutions to combat periodontal disease.
- We treat periodontal disease based on its severity. If you have gingivitis (the early phase of periodontal disease), we typically perform a routine cleaning (sometimes it takes 2 visits to clear up this infection), and we recommend changes to your at-home oral care.
- If the disease progresses to cause deeper pockets, we must conduct a soft-tissue management program or gum therapy. We use hand scaling techniques and an ultrasonic scaler to remove tartar, plaque, and bacteria underneath your gums, and often use a tissue laser to improve unhealthy gum tissue.
After the treatment is completed, we will have you return in 6 weeks for a follow-up visit. At this time, we check your periodontal pockets again and go over any further home care instructions we may have for you.
Once you are diagnosed with periodontal disease, you will always potentially have it. The bacteria that cause this damage will attempt to “recolonize” in about 90 days. This is why we recommend effective at-home oral care and a 3-month maintenance appointment during which we will provide a more thorough cleaning of your teeth and gums.
The American Academy of Periodontology indicates that 3 of 4 Americans have some form of periodontal disease. We do not want you or your family to join this outrageous statistic.