Gum disease, also called periodontitis, is a progressive disease that can begin as gingivitis. Gingivitis is inflammation of the gums. When left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, which can cause damage to the gums, jawbone, and teeth.
Gum disease comes in two forms. The first and most common is gingivitis. This form of gum disease is caused by plaque, which builds up in the mouth and irritates the gums. Gingivitis can be reversed with professional treatment and by brushing and flossing regularly.
When gum disease advances past gingivitis, it is called periodontitis. This form of gum disease can cause the gums to pull away from the teeth, forming pockets where bacteria can grow and multiply.
Periodontal disease, also called gum disease, is an infection of the gums. The disease is caused by bacteria that infect the gums. The bacteria, along with mucus and other particles, can build up between the teeth and gums. This buildup, called plaque, can irritate the gums, causing them to become inflamed. Inflamed gums are red, tender, and likely to bleed. Over time, the gums begin to pull away from your teeth, creating spaces called pockets.
In short, the signs and symptoms of gum disease include:
The best way to avoid gum disease is to practice good oral hygiene. You should brush and floss your teeth daily to remove any plaque buildup. However, if you do notice any signs of gum disease, contact your dentist. There are a number of ways you can treat gum diseases, such as deep cleanings, antibiotics, or gum surgery. Your dentist will be able to help you determine the best treatment plan.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should seek treatment as soon as possible to prevent further damage. Your dentist may recommend the following treatment options:
If your gum disease is more advanced, your dentist may recommend scaling and root planing. This involves removing any plaque and tartar from your teeth. Then, your dentist will smooth down your roots to make sure bacteria don’t collect there and form plaque. Scaling and planing are performed as part of deep cleaning.
During a pulpotomy, a dentist removes infected pulp (soft tissue) from deep inside the tooth. He or she then fills the resulting void with biocompatible material. The tooth should function normally after treatment.
Flap surgery is a minor surgical procedure to help treat gum disease. Flap surgery involves lifting back the gums to expose the roots of the teeth. This allows the dentist to thoroughly clean the teeth and remove any plaque or tartar buildup.
When gum disease is caught early, your dentist may be able to use a minimally invasive procedure that regenerates tissue. During this procedure, a small wound is created around the tooth that makes it possible to easily insert a membrane into the gums. The membrane contains proteins that encourage healing while blocking bacteria from re-entering the area.
Guided tissue regeneration is a minor surgical procedure that restores the health of the gums. It treats gum disease by regenerating the gum tissue. During the procedure, the dentist will fold back the gums, clean the gum pockets, and then place tissue-forming proteins in the gum pockets to encourage new bone growth.
To find out more about the dental services offered at Orange Family Dental, call (619) 280-4861 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit our Dentist in San Diego, CA, at 4205 Fairmount Avenue, San Diego, CA 92105.