Periodontal disease is a disease that focuses on the gums and the underlying bones that support the teeth. Also called gum disease, it is a more advanced type of gingivitis that is not as easily fixable. As plaque and tartar buildup, pockets can begin to form where the gums meet the teeth. As more build up, the pockets widen and cause dangerous areas where bacteria can gather.
In its early stages, it is generally painless, which results in four out of five people having gum disease and not even knowing it! A periodontal dentist can conduct a thorough inspection and determine a periodontal therapy game plan to help restore your oral health.
Types of Periodontal Treatments
Commonly used periodontal treatments:
- Scaling & Root Planing – The most common method of fighting gum disease is through scaling and root planing. It involves removing the built-up bacteria from the gum line and then planing the roots to remove any uneven areas or bumps that could attract bacteria more easily. The smooth root is also helpful in rejoining with the gum.
- Antibiotic Treatment – Commonly used in conjunction with a scaling and root planing procedure, antibiotics can be used to fight any additional bacteria lingering under the surface and to prevent additional infections from occurring.
- Pocket Reduction Surgery – If the pockets where bacteria gather start to enlarge to a dangerous level, they can be reduced through surgery. This drastically lowers the chance of bacteria gathering along the gum line.
- Crown Lengthening – If not enough of the tooth is sticking out from the gum, crown lengthening can be done, which removes a small portion of the gum to give the proper tooth to gum ratio.