What Is Gum Disease and What Are the Treatment Options - Vita Dental Spring
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What Is Gum Disease and What Are the Treatment Options

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What Is Gum Disease and What Are the Treatment Options

Almost every part of your body is vulnerable to infection, and this includes your mouth. Gum disease is a set of inflammatory illnesses, caused by bacterial growth which affects the tissues surrounding the teeth.

The early stage of the infection is referred to as gingivitis. The bacteria present in plaque buildup, causes the gums to swell and bleed during tooth brushing. 

In its more severe form is known as periodontitis. The gums pull away from the tooth causing the nearby tissues to break down. The sulcus progressively develops into a deep pocket that stores bacteria which leads to gum infection and eventually tooth loss.

Risk Factors

Plaque is the major cause of gum disease. Nevertheless, there are other risk factors that contribute to periodontal disease. These include:

Hormonal changes experienced during monthly menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause, make gums more sensitive and easier for gingivitis to progress.

Illnesses such as diabetes, cancer or HIV, may interfere with the immune system thus affecting the condition of your gums. 

Some medications can affect oral health because they lessen the flow of saliva, which protects the teeth and gums.

Bad habits such as smoking and poor oral hygiene make it easier for gingivitis to develop.

Treatment

The best way to treat periodontal disease is by practicing good oral hygiene. However, other dental and medical treatments are obligatory. You should consult with a dentist at Vita Dental Spring to know about the numerous treatment options they have, that will vary based on the severity of the gum disease.  Some common methods of treatment for gum infection are:

Antibiotic Therapy

As with any type of infection, antibiotics are often used to treat gum infection. Your dentist at Vita Dental Spring may opt to prescribe antibiotic pills such as metronidazole or amoxicillin or administer an injection directly into the gum infection site. These drugs, on the other hand, may have side effects and should be used with caution.

Scale and Polish

To remove plaque and tartar, that has built up on your teeth, your dentist may suggest that you have your teeth scaled and polished at the clinic. The hygienist scrapes away plaque and tartar from your teeth using special instruments and then polishes your teeth to remove any stains or marks.

The cost of a scale and polish varies subject to what needs to be carried out. So discuss the price with your dental hygienist at Vita Dental Spring in advance.

Root Planing

The first step towards treating periodontitis is the conventional, nonsurgical treatment called scaling and root planing (SRP). This advanced treatment deeply cleanses in between your teeth and gums, all the way to the roots, to remove bacteria.

Prior to the treatment, you may need to have a local anesthetic to numb the affected area. You may experience minimal pain and discomfort for a few hours after having root planing.

Gum Grafts

When gum tissue wears away, gum recedes thereby exposing more of the tooth at the root. The exposed roots can be corrected by undergoing a minor dental surgery known as gum grafts. It is a quick and fairly simple surgery that helps to reduce sensitivity and protect your teeth roots from decay.

During this treatment, the gum tissue is taken from the roof of the mouth or from another source and is used to cover the roots of the affected teeth.

Gingivectomy

Gingivectomy is a dental treatment in which the oral surgeon cuts away part of the gum tissues in the mouth (the gingiva). Removing the pocket wall provides accessibility for the complete removal of the calculus and in-depth smoothing of the roots, to aid in creating a conducive environment for gingival healing and restoration of a physiologic gingival contour.

Flap Surgery

If your gum disease is severe, the gum tissue is not fitting securely around the tooth, and you can’t keep the deep pocket area clean, flap surgery (periodontal pocket reduction) may be necessary.

Your dentist at Vita Dental Spring folds back the gum tissue to remove infectious bacteria and smooth areas of damaged bone. This allows the gum tissue to grow and reattach to healthy bone.

Bone Grafting

Bone grafting is a surgical procedure that stimulates the growth of bone in the area destroyed by periodontal disease. During this process, your dentist eliminates the existing bacteria and then mounts either natural or synthetic bone in the area of bone loss. Tissue-stimulating proteins are also added together with these bones to help regrow bone and tissue effectively.

Gingivitis can be reversed, and the advancement of gum disease can be halted in nearly all cases. Patients at Vita Dental Spring can significantly reduce the risk of gum disease and infection if they follow these important guidelines:

Make oral hygiene a priority every day by brushing with fluoride toothpaste

Floss teeth day-to-day to remove food particles that cause plaque and tartar build-up

Use an anti-gingivitis mouthwash that kills the bacteria that causes plaque

Visit the dentist after every six months for a professional cleaning.

Avoid smoking tobacco