achieve a healthier smile with one of our periodontal care treatments
You have probably heard of gingivitis; it’s the earliest stage of periodontal disease, or gum disease. Gingivitis is a mild inflammation of the gum tissues around teeth. If not treated properly, gingivitis can advance into periodontitis or advanced periodontitis.
This mild inflammation is caused by the failure to adequately remove plaque and tartar from the gumline. Irregular or incorrect brushing technique, combined with a failure to receive timely professional cleanings is often what leads to gingivitis developing. The unremoved plaque and tartar is host to harmful oral bacteria that grow by feeing on starches left over in the mouth after eating and drinking. As the bacteria grow, tooth enamel erodes and gum tissues break down from the release of harmful acid by-products from the thriving bacteria.
If left untreated, gingivitis can develop into a more serious stage of periodontal disease called periodontitis. In this stage, gum tissues pull away from teeth and develop deep periodontal “pockets.” These gaps between your gum tissue and teeth create a perfect hiding spot for additional oral bacteria. This pocket protects the bacteria from being reached by normal brushing and flossing techniques. If still left untreated, periodontal disease can further progress into advanced periodontitis. This critical stage involves infection spreading to other supportive structures within your mouth, such as the teeth and bone tissues.
Luckily, our doctors can treat periodontal disease at each stage. The sooner treatment is sought, the quicker your mouth can heal. By treating out-of-control oral bacteria as soon as possible, you can reduce the amount of damage they incur on your gums and other supportive tissues.
understanding periodontal disease
why timely treatment is important
In recent years, studies have shown that the health of your mouth and body are interrelated. One can impact the other – either positively or negatively. Periodontal disease has been linked to diabetes, oral cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, and even stroke. Taking great care of your teeth and gums can prevent these issues from developing so you can enjoy a long and healthy life.
You have a greater risk of being diagnosed if you smoke, chew tobacco, or have a family history of periodontal disease. Other risk factors include:
- Poor oral hygiene habits
- Unaddressed tooth decay
- Certain medications that cause dry mouth
- Hormonal changes as a result of pregnancy or oral contraceptives
common signs and symptoms
Below are the warning signs of periodontal disease to be aware of:
- Chronic halitosis (bad breath)
- Bad taste in your mouth
- Gums that easily bleed
- Tender and red gums
- Gum inflammation
- Loose or shifting teeth
- Dental sensitivity
- Pain when chewing or biting down
- Gum recession
If you experience any of the above symptoms, it is important to schedule a dental examination right away. Prompt treatment can reverse the effects of periodontal disease, and save you from painful or unpleasant side effects.
While periodontal disease can have a negative impact on your overall physical health, it can also wreak havoc on your oral health, resulting in tooth loss and bone degeneration. By attending routine examinations, the dentist can identify possible issues in the earliest stages using a periodontal probe and x-rays. The type of treatment recommended will depend on the progression of the disease.
Did you know that tartar can only be removed by a dental professional? Regular dental prophylaxis, or teeth cleaning, removes tartar safely. This makes it easier to keep a cleaner mouth at home, and prevents periodontal pockets from forming. For the sake of your teeth and gums, don’t skip regular dental cleanings!
bad breath treatment
This treatment is considered preventative in nature and can remove harmful bacteria before it sets in around your gum line. The first step involves professionally cleaning and flossing in between your teeth. We will also provide at-home care treatment recommendations, which will involve purchasing a tongue scraper to remove foul smelling and unhealthy bacteria from your tongue. The dentist may also recommend rinsing with an antibacterial mouth wash daily after you brush and floss your teeth.
scaling and root planing
For patients who develop periodontal “pockets” while suffering from periodontal disease, we can perform an even deeper cleaning that includes scaling and root planing. During this treatment, an ultrasonic device is used to meticulously remove stubborn plaque and tartar build-up from the base of the tooth and even beneath the gum line. A root planing device will then be used to reach underneath the gum line to smooth the root surface of the tooth. This helps the damaged, loosened gums to reattach and start healing after periodontal disease. Reducing pocket depths prevents food and harmful bacteria from getting trapped, as well as prevents side effects from worsening. If necessary, topical antibiotic will be applied to eliminate any further bacteria.
In its more advanced stages, periodontal disease can lead to gum recession, a condition where the gum line shrinks away from the teeth. When this occurs, it can lead to dental sensitivity, loose teeth, uneven gum lines, as well as place you at greater risk for tooth loss. Our doctors can restore a receding gum line through gum grafting surgery. During the procedure, oral soft tissues are harvested from the roof of your mouth, or from a tissue bank, and placed over the recessed area before being stitched in place. Doing so promotes gum regeneration and a healthy and aesthetically pleasing gum line.
When the former treatments are unsuccessful, gum surgery is generally recommended. During this procedure, an incision will be made along the gum line to remove unhealthy bacteria deep below its surface. Once removed, the tissue will be sutured tightly around the base of the tooth. If necessary, a diode laser can be used to trim any damaged tissue.
If you are suffering from painful, bleeding or sore gums, or are interested in a preventive cleaning and examination, we are here to help. In addition, we are pleased to have Dr. Norouzinia, a board-certified periodontist, on staff at Metro Dental Care. Dr. Norouzinia has advanced training that supports superior gum health and restoration. For patients with advanced periodontal disease, or those who are needing specialized periodontal services, Dr. Norouzinia offers convenient, specialized care on-site at our practice.
To schedule your consultation, contact our downtown Denver office today online or call (303) 534-2626. We are located in the heart of downtown at the corner of Glenarm Place and 14 Street near Crown Plaza Denver hotel.