Dental plaque buildup is a very common issue in the United States. In fact, gum disease caused by dental plaque is among the most common diseases around the world! Hundreds of million of people suffer from both gum disease and periodontitis, the more advanced and more dangerous form of gum disease, but that doesn’t mean you have to as well. Periodontal therapy from Distinctive Dentistry on Maitland gives your smile a second chance. Contact our office to get started on your periodontal maintenance and get your oral health back on track!
After enough dental plaque has built up on the teeth and gums, the bacteria inside that plaque begins breaking down both enamel and the connective tissue holding teeth in place. As this occurs, your gums become increasingly inflamed, leading them to pull away from your teeth and develop spaces in between them known as pockets. As these pockets form, plaque and food debris will fill these spaces more easily. Without treatment, gum disease can cause permanent bone and tooth loss.
If caught early, gum disease can be treated with a professional cleaning and improved at-home oral hygiene. If the infection is caught too late, scaling and root planing will likely be needed. Scaling is the process of removing plaque and tartar from areas below and above the gum line. These areas cannot be reached with brushing and flossing alone.
After scaling, the dentist will begin the root planing portion of your periodontal therapy. Root planing involves smoothing out the tooth roots in order to help your gums reattach to your teeth. This also works to prevent future infections from developing.
Another way our dentists treat gum disease is through antibacterial therapy. Antibacterial agents can be provided in different ways, including a gel, oral rinse or pill. In some cases, we may insert your medication directly underneath your gums for maximum protection and optimal tissue regeneration.
After your initial appointment, you will feel some minor tenderness, soreness and sensitivity in your gums, but this is normal and will disappear after a couple days.
Keep in mind that periodontal therapy may require multiple visits to complete, depending on the extent of your condition. After your initial cleaning, you’ll likely need to come back for additional visits to ensure that the treatment is working and that your gum disease is under control. This includes measuring the pocket depth of your gums, which will indicate whether or not your gums are responding to treatment.
Along with periodontal visits, you’ll also need to commit to brushing twice a day with a fluoridated toothpaste as well as flossing daily. Avoid using all tobacco products and always keep a balanced diet at home.