The Dangers of Untreated Periodontal Disease
Untreated gum disease can wreak havoc on your oral health. Periodontal disease contributes to a number of oral health concerns including tooth loss and jawbone deterioration.
Without early intervention, periodontal disease can aggressively attack the entire oral health system. If this disease progresses to its more advanced stages, it is not curable. It can only be managed with periodontal therapy and vigilant oral hygiene. Waiting to treat gum disease might also mean that surgical treatments such as gum flap surgery and tissue grafts are necessary.
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical gum treatment option that removes debris and bacteria along the gums and the roots of teeth. This treatment option actually consists of two procedures, performed in tandem to promote a healthy rejuvenation of the gingiva.
Scaling involves using handheld dental instruments to remove tartar and plaque below the gums and the roots of teeth. Root planing focuses on smoothing the roots of teeth with file-like tools so that it’s harder for tartar to reattach to their surfaces in the future.
Antibiotics and antimicrobial medication can help reduce the pathogenic bacteria in the gingiva. Some medications might be applied topically by inserting medication directly into periodontal pockets or by wearing medicated trays every day for a predetermined period of time.
The Importance of Follow-Up Appointments
Follow up appointments are an important aspect of evaluating the effectiveness of periodontal treatments. These appointments determine whether additional treatment is necessary to prevent the progression of gum disease by physically examining the gingiva and measuring the depth and width of periodontal pockets.
If you have been diagnosed with gum disease, call our practice to set up an appointment with our periodontist.