Periodontal Disease Treatment Fights Against Gum Disease
Did you know that gum disease, at some level, effects 80% of all adults and that it is the leading cause of adult tooth loss?
Gum disease is an infection that destroys the bone around your teeth. It is rarely painful. However, there are signs and symptoms that may indicate that you have a gum problem.
- Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
- Puffy, red, or swollen gums
- Bad breath
- Bad taste
- Loose teeth
You may also have gum disease and have no signs or symptoms until the damage to the bone supporting your teeth is so severe that tooth loss is inevitable. That is why Dr. Singh and Dr. Maynard and our hygienists check your gums with probing and digital x-rays at least once a year.
About Your Gums and General Health
In addition, gum disease can affect your overall health. Gum disease has been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and many other medical conditions. For a complete list of conditions that have been linked to gum disease, click on the link—Medical Risks and Periodontal Disease.
Treating Gum Disease—A Unique Approach
Over ten years ago, we implemented a unique program to diagnose and treat gum disease.
We wanted to be aggressive in diagnosing the disease, so we could implement treatment before serious bone damage occurred. We now measure the space between your teeth and gums and check for bleeding at least once a year. Yearly checks with digital x-rays help us monitor the bone level around your teeth.
At the same time, we wanted to take a thorough but conservative approach to treating gum disease. Our goal is to get your mouth healthy while helping you avoid expensive and often painful gum surgery.
To be successful, we must first make sure that the root surfaces of your teeth are meticulously clean. Your hygienist will gently but thoroughly remove all the tartar below your gums with both ultrasonic and hand instruments. Since even a small amount of tartar left behind inhibits gum healing, she will take her time to be thorough, working on only 3 or 4 teeth at each appointment.
Controlling gum disease is a team effort. Once your root surfaces are clean, it will be your job to keep them clean on a daily basis. In fact, your efforts at home, every day, to control your disease are as important as, or more important than what we do in our office. Since your home care is critical to our success in controlling your gum disease, your hygienist will spend as much time as necessary to make certain you have the skills and motivation necessary to keep the root surfaces of your teeth clean and your gums healthy. We feel that this emphasis on home care habits sets us apart from other offices. All too often we have talked to new patients who had their mouths cleaned up only to have the destruction and disease continue because they were not shown how to maintain their gum health.
Once your gums are healthy, we will check them several times a year to make sure you are maintaining health. By working one on one with their patients over a period of time, our hygienists have seen gum pocket measurement decrease, bleeding stop, and bone levels stabilize without surgery.
This program has been an unqualified success since its implementation over 20 years ago. With our help, and their efforts, our patients have controlled their gum disease and in most all cases, have avoided gum surgery.
When scaling and root planing is necessary to treat gum disease, Dr. Singh uses Arestin medication to treat the heart of the problem. The medication is placed in the pockets above and below the gumline. The best part? No removal is required as the medication will dissolve on its own.