If you’ve noticed your gums are tender to the touch, more red than pink in color, and you see blood when you brush or floss your teeth, you likely have gingivitis – a mild form of periodontal (gum) disease. In its early stages, gum disease can be reversed. However, if you put off treatment, the disease could progress to a more serious stage, known as periodontitis. Don’t risk receding gums, potential tissue infection, and tooth loss. Here are the options for gum disease treatment Rochester residents need to know.
Treatment for Early Stages of Gum Disease
If your dentist determines that you have gingivitis – an early form of gum disease, you’ll need to contact a periodontist. Your periodontist will perform a thorough periodontal evaluation. Following your periodontal evaluation, your periodontist may recommend one of the following non-surgical treatments for gum disease:
Scaling and Root Planing Procedure
Scaling and root planing are actually two different procedures, but they often accompany each other. Scaling removes plaque and tartar from your tooth surfaces and in any of the pockets that have formed between your teeth and gum line. Your periodontist may use a combination of manual and ultrasonic instruments for this procedure. Periodontists often use both during the scaling process.
Root planing simply involves going deeper beneath the gums to smooth out rough areas of the tooth root surface. This procedure reduces tissue inflammation and makes it easier for your gums to heal and reattach to your teeth. Your periodontist may use the same instruments for scaling and root planing.
Your periodontist or periodontal hygienist will typically provide a local anesthetic to make you more comfortable during the procedures. You may require more than one appointment to complete the process.
Medication for Gum Disease Treatment
Because it may be difficult to access some areas of your gums as periodontal disease progresses, your periodontist may prescribe an antimicrobial rinse or a topical antibiotic to kill bacteria that instruments cannot reach. Since some types of bacteria are actually beneficial for oral health, antibiotics and antimicrobials should be used only on a short-term basis to prevent and control infection.
Treatments for Advanced Gum Disease (Periodontitis)
If your periodontal disease has advanced to a more serious stage, you may need a periodontal surgical procedure to combat gum disease. These surgical procedures are explained below.
Gum Pocket Depth Reduction
Your gums are meant to fit snugly against your teeth. That helps support the teeth and protects against infection and bone loss. When the supporting tissues are infected and pull away from your teeth, the resulting pockets must be thoroughly cleaned and the gum tissue stitched to firmly attach around the tooth. Some practices now use laser technology as a minimally invasive technique to kill bacteria.
With the pockets eliminated, patients will not have to worry about the progression of gum disease, as long as they strictly adhere to good oral hygiene and see their periodontist regularly for professional cleanings.
The tissues surrounding and supporting your teeth, keeping them firmly in your jawbone, are known as the periodontium. Unfortunately, progressive gum disease can destroy these tissues, and you can risk losing your teeth.
But it’s now possible to regenerate the supporting tissues and help your body produce new bone and gum tissue. With the new regenerated periodontium in place, patients can better maintain periodontal health.
Soft Tissue Graft Surgery
Advanced periodontal disease may cause your gums to recede and expose the roots of your teeth. Other causes of gum recession include genetics, previous dental procedures, aggressive tooth brushing, orthodontic procedures, and more.
During soft tissue graft surgery, your periodontist can graft new tissue in spots where there is gum recession, using material from your own mouth. There are different kinds of soft tissue graft procedures, distinguished by the location in your mouth where the gum material is sourced. Once grafts are placed and sutured, they eventually blend with surrounding tissues for a natural look. Grafts will also help prevent the recurrence of periodontal disease if you abide by your doctor’s recommendations for keeping your gums healthy.
Gum Disease Treatment Rochester
Whether you’re in the early or advanced stages of periodontal disease, the professionals at Dental Implants & Periodontal Health of Rochester will accurately assess your condition and recommend the treatment to restore your oral health. Dr. Zahavi, Dr. Rapoport and their team are well-respected in the Rochester area, and you’ll receive excellent care. Don’t risk further damage to your teeth and gums. Schedule a consultation today at 585-685-2005.