Gum Health is the primary cause of lost teeth
Periodontal disease (also known as gum disease) is infections of the gum and bone that hold teeth in place. Gum disease is linked to several serious conditions such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. The American Dental Association reports that at least 80% of American adults have gum disease and are at risk for head and neck cancer. If periodontal problems are not treated, they can become severe and may eventually lead to tooth loss. Often, periodontal disease is painless and you may not be aware that you have a problem until your gums and supporting bone are seriously damaged.
WHAT CAUSES PERIODONTAL DISEASE?
Plaque includes a film of bacteria that attaches to teeth and gums. The bacteria in plaque causes irritation of the tissues that support your teeth. This irritation can lead to chronic inflammation, bleeding, and infection that can destroy your gum and melt your bone tissue.
If you've been diagnosed with gum disease, there are a variety of treatment options depending on the details of your situation and the severity of the problem. We always start with the least invasive options, which are non-surgical. However, in more serious cases, surgery may be necessary.
The first line of defense against gum disease is a unique type of cleaning called “scaling and root planing.” In this procedure, an ultrasonic cleaning device is used to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth where regular cleaning devices can't reach: under the gum line, on the tooth, and around the root. Then, the rough surface of the tooth and the root are smoothed out (planed). This provides a healthy, clean surface that makes it easier for the gum tissue to reattach to the tooth.
If you address your gum disease before it becomes severe, scaling and root planing may be the only treatment you need. However, as with any dental procedure, after-care is vital. In order to keep your teeth in good shape and resist future occurrences of gum disease, you must brush and floss daily, eat a healthy diet, avoid tobacco use, and have regular dental checkups. Even after a successful scaling and root planing, if you don't attend to your teeth properly, it's quite likely that you'll develop gum disease again.
Surgical Treatment Options
If the tissue or bone surrounding your teeth is too damaged to be repaired with non-surgical treatment, several surgical procedures are available to prevent severe damage and to restore a healthy smile. We will recommend the procedure that is best suited to the condition of your teeth and gums.
To make sure you are not suffering from gum disease, please call our
practice to avoid any further consequences that can occur.