Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is a severe bacterial inflammation of gum tissues. A leading cause of tooth loss, periodontal disease affects millions of Americans every year. The earlier you detect gum disease, the less invasive the treatment is likely to be. Here at Edgartown Dental Group, we prefer a conservative approach when treating periodontitis.
Scaling and root planing, or deep scaling, is usually the first-line treatment for gum disease. Where the infection responds to scaling and root planing, there’s no need for further surgical therapies. In the rare instances when scaling and root planing doesn’t do the trick, our dentist may recommend surgical intervention.
Our mouths harbor bacteria that break down the foods and sugars in your mouth. Plaque is the by-product of this bacterial activity. When plaque accumulates in your oral cavity, the result is usually cavities and gum disease.
In the absence of proper dental hygiene, plaque causes severe inflammation of gum tissues. This inflammation is known as gingivitis in its earlier stages and periodontal disease in the more advanced stage.
Besides poor oral hygiene, there exist other risk factors make you more susceptible to gum disease. These include smoking, genetic predisposition, an illness that attacks your immune system such as HIV or cancer, as well as certain medications, for example, those that decrease saliva production.
Common symptoms of periodontal disease include pain, bleeding, swelling, receding gums, bad breath, and loose teeth.
Regular dental examinations and cleanings can prevent gum disease as well as allow our dentist to catch symptoms while they’re still in their earlier stages.
Scaling involves the careful and thorough removal of plaque and tartar from below and above the gum line. During this procedure, our dentist uses a dental scaler to remove these harmful deposits. Root planing is the smoothing of exposed tooth roots to allow the gums to re-attach as well as prevent the easy adherence of bacteria and plaque.
Depending on our dentist’s assessment, you may require the placement of topical antibiotics at the points of inflammation, as well as antimicrobial rinses to complement in-office treatments.
After your first scaling and root planing procedure, our dentist will schedule you for a follow-up appointment after six weeks. If we note that the gum disease is under control, you will not require any further treatments, only periodic maintenance every four months or so.
You can avoid tooth loss and other long-term complications by getting non-surgical periodontics in Edgartown, MA. Call Edgartown Dental Group to schedule a consultation with our dentist near you.