When discovered in its early stages, gum disease is easily treated and seldom leaves lasting effects. If the disease is allowed to advance without general dentistry treatment, it can ultimately lead to irreparable gum damage, tooth loss and bone damage. Periodontal therapy addresses the problems caused by advanced periodontal disease.
Symptoms and Causes of Periodontal Disease
Gum disease is characterized by red or bright pink gums. The gums are puffy or swollen in appearance and may bleed when you brush or floss. Advanced gum disease can cause bad breath due to the infection in the gums.
A noticeable amount of tartar on the teeth is another indication. The hard substance is brownish-yellow, and as it accumulates, it pushes the gums away from the teeth, causing pockets to develop. Within the pockets, bacteria feed on the food debris producing toxins that damage the gums and can dissolve the bone.
The main cause of gum disease is poor oral hygiene. Failure to brush and floss leads to a buildup of plaque and tartar. In some instances, there may be one or two hard-to-clean areas that can lead to periodontal disease.
Poor oral hygiene is not the only cause. There are certain medications and medical conditions that can cause an individual to be more likely to develop gum disease. Hormone fluctuations can make females more susceptible to gum disease during certain times. Genetics also plays a role in the development of gum disease. Some individuals are genetically predisposed to the disease.
Treatment for advanced gum disease is determined by the severity of the condition. After a thorough evaluation, your treatment plan will be created. Severe infection of the gums may require treatment with antibiotics. You may need to take them orally, or the medicine may be placed directly in the gums.
In addition to treating the infection, the teeth will need to be thoroughly cleaned. Plaque and tartar are eliminated from the teeth using special instruments. Scaling instruments are used to break up and remove the hardened substance from above and below the gumline. After scaling is completed, the roots are smoothed down.
Root planing instruments are used to smooth the tooth root surface. This allows the gums to reattach to the tooth. When surgery is required to remove damaged gum tissue, a special type of bandage may be used to cover the area and promote healing.
Gum disease is an avoidable problem with regular dental checkups and good oral hygiene practices. If you notice the signs of gingivitis, contact Avalon Dental Group for effective periodontal therapy. Contact our dentist office today to schedule your appointment.