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Surgical & Non-Surgical Periodontal Disease Treatment

Surgical & Non-Surgical Periodontal Disease Treatment

Periodontal disease, or gum disease as it is commonly known, is an infection of the tissues that surround and support your teeth. Gum disease is a major cause of tooth loss in adults – about three out of four people will experience it at some point in their lives. Since gum disease is often painless, it may be too late before you know you have it. Depending on the stage of the disease, your dentist will decide what type of treatment is the best for you.

The following are different types of non-surgical treatment:

  • Professional dental cleaning: During your bi-yearly checkup, your dentist, or dental hygienist, will remove the plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line of all teeth. Plaque causes periodontal disease and can only be removed with professional cleaning. If your dentist sees signs of early gum disease, he or she may recommend that you receive professional cleanings more than twice a year.
  • Scaling and root planning: This is a careful, deep-cleaning of the root surfaces to remove plaque and calculus (tartar) from above and below the gum line and to smooth the tooth root to remove bacterial toxins. This provides a clean surface for the gums to reattach to the teeth. Scaling and root planning is done under a local anesthetic.
  • Tray delivery systems: Patients can use custom-made trays to deliver medication that has been prescribed by their dentist. These trays are similar to fluoride trays used in the dental office.

When non-surgical treatment does not restore the health of your gums, surgery may be needed. The following are different types of surgical treatment for periodontal disease:

  • Soft tissue grafts: Tissue from the roof of the mouth is taken and stitched into place, adding tissue to the affected area. This procedure reinforces thin gums or fills in places where gums have receded.
  • Bone graft: Fragments of your own bone, synthetic bone, or donated bone are used to replace the bone destroyed by gum disease. The graft serves as a platform for bone regrowth, which restores stability to the teeth.
  • Pocket reduction surgery: When you have periodontal disease, the supporting bone and tissue is destroy forming “pockets” around the teeth. During this procedure, gums are folded back and the tarter is removed. The gums are then placed so that the tissue fits snugly around the tooth.
  • Guided tissue regeneration: This procedure stimulates bone and tissue growth. Your dentist will insert a small piece of mesh-like fabric between the bone and gum. This prevents gum tissue from growing where the bone should be and promotes the re-growth of bone and connective tissue to better support the teeth.
  • Bone surgery: Due to moderate and advanced bone loss, shallow craters will appear in the bone. During this procedure, the bone around the tooth is reshaped to decrease the craters. This procedure will make it harder for bacteria to collect and grow in your gums.

Following periodontal treatment, it is extremely important that you develop a regular healthy oral hygiene routine. Otherwise, you may run the risk of getting periodontal disease again.

To prevent the onset of gum disease and keep your teeth and gums healthy, be sure to brush your teeth twice a day and floss regularly; remember to visit the dental twice a year. Also, don’t smoke. Smokers are at a higher risk of gum disease than non-smokers.

For more information on gum disease or to schedule an appointment, please call 734-479-1200.