If you’ve recently been diagnosed with periodontal disease, then you’ll want to arrange to start gum disease treatment as early as possible. Periodontal therapy (the technical term used to describe gum disease treatment) serves two purposes: to prevent the infection from becoming worse, and to facilitate healing.
Minor gum infections like gingivitis are reversible, but if your infection is aggressive enough, gum disease treatment can’t technically reverse your gum health back to the point where it was before the periodontitis started.
Here’s why: when active periodontal infections invade the supporting structures around your teeth, they cause your gum tissues to detach from the root surface and result in gradual resorption (shrinkage) of the bone around the root. This twofold process can cause the affected teeth to experience gum recession and mobility. If untreated, tooth loss is likely to occur.
But periodontal treatment can keep the disease from worsening, and reverse some symptoms of the infection to a certain extent.
The Purpose of Gum Disease Treatment
When periodontal infections are halted, it’s possible to preserve your oral health and current tooth stability at its current level, or even add additional supportive therapies like bone grafting, gum grafting, or laser treatments that facilitate reattachment and regrowth of the gum and bone structures.
Getting treatment for your gum infection works by eliminating the bacterial source of the disease. Typically referred to as “deep cleanings” or “periodontal scaling and root planing,” these procedures include a thorough cleaning of all calcified tartar and soft plaque biofilm from the root surface of teeth, just under the gumlines where tissue has detached.
Once the area is cleaned, it’s possible for the gums to start to reattach, if only just a little bit. After all, when it comes to your smile, every millimeter matters!
Oral Hygiene Has a Huge Role to Play
It’s not possible for a periodontal infection to heal if there isn’t a good home care routine and maintenance protocol following your gum disease treatment. After all, the disease is the result of a culmination of past oral hygiene practices (and underlying medical concerns that may accelerate the process.)
Plan to invest in a water flosser, to clean below the gumlines inside of the “pockets” surrounding your teeth on a daily basis. Water flossers are more effective when it comes to cleaning further down than floss. Although messy, they’re simple to use. Some designs can even be set up to use in the shower.
Brush for a minimum of two minutes, twice per day. Focus your efforts along the margin of the gums, where plaque tends to collect first. An electric or sonic toothbrush can make your brushing sessions even more effective.
Schedule a periodontal maintenance appointment at least every 3-4 months before jumping right back into your six month routine again. Because deep periodontal pockets accumulate bacteria very easily, they can harbor biofilm that causes relapse of gum disease. As such, you’ll need a professional to clean them more frequently.
As the pockets around your teeth become shallower and other symptoms improve, you may be able to go back onto a six month checkup schedule.
Don’t Delay Your Treatment
Putting gum disease treatment off will only allow the infection to progress. Eventually, it can cause you to lose your entire smile. You see, periodontitis is the leading cause of adult tooth loss. Even if you’re not experiencing visible symptoms it doesn’t mean your teeth are safe. If you doubt the recommendations from your dentist, we invite you to visit our Scottsdale dentist for a second opinion and periodontal exam.
Let us know if you’re exhibiting symptoms of:
- Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
- Bad breath
- A foul taste in your mouth
- Tooth mobility
- Receding gums (being “long in the tooth”)
- Heavy tartar buildup
- Food getting caught between your teeth
- Teeth starting to shift or move out of alignment
With the right care, our Scottsdale patients can effectively treat their gum disease, prevent it from relapsing, and even improve or reverse some symptoms to a certain extent.
Save Your Smile. Book a $39 Exam Today.
Most dental problems — including gum disease — are preventable or can be reversed if caught early enough. Call us today for affordable dental care in Scottsdale. We’re currently offering a $39 dental exam special for all new patients.
Are you experiencing symptoms of gum disease? Getting it treated as soon as possible will provide you with the best outcome. Call Dr. Lernor, a highly-rated, gentle Scottsdale dentist at (602) 483-4112 today to schedule your appointment!
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