Let's face it: Many people take their gums for granted. When someone has pink, healthy gums they often overlook the protection to teeth that gums offer. However, as soon as there is a problem, gums become the talk of the town. There are many different stages of gum disease, ranging from gingivitis to advanced periodontitis. If you are begin to notice that your gums frequently bleed when you eat, brush or floss, you should make an appointment with your dentist. Gum disease is difficult to treat outside of a dentist's office. Upon your visit to a dental professional, you will be able to discover how advanced any gum disease is and your options for treatment. A few options for gum disease treatment include:
1-Root Scaling and Planing. One of the most basic procedures that takes place during a routine dental cleaning is called root scaling and planing. This is what the dentist or dental hygienist is performing when they take their instruments and scrape plaque build-up away from teeth. Plaque is a sticky substance that forms from food particles which have been left in the mouth due to improper brushing and/or flossing. It can be painful to remove and bleeding may occur, but scaling and planing is a relatively easy procedure that can be done in the office, usually at no extra charge.
2-Pocket Reduction. If plaque is not removed in a timely manner it can sink deeper into the space between the gums and teeth causing pockets that can catch even more food, making gum disease substantially worse. There is a surgical procedure called pocket reduction which is basically the removal of such pockets. The gums are opened up, pockets removed, and a flap of gum tissue is placed around the teeth to reverse the effects of the pocket. When plaque builds up in pockets between teeth, it begins to form bacteria and eat away at the bone surrounding teeth. It is important to treat gum disease before it reaches that point, since it is hard to treat once the bone tissue is compromised.
3-Bone Grafts. Should the bone surrounding teeth become compromised there is still an option of treatment known as a bone graft. The dentist will remove parts of bone that have become infected and will then introduce healthy bone and proteins from elsewhere in the body. The goal is to encourage regeneration of bone tissue, though it can be quite painful and costly.
Contact a clinic, like Fuller Periodontics & Implant Dentistry, for more help.