Northwest Arkansas Family Dental
Fayetteville, AR Dentist

Which Treatment Is Right for My Periodontal Disease?

July 2, 2014
Posted By: Dr. Kifer
Periodontal Disease | Fayetteville AR Dentist

Gum DiseasePeriodontal disease is a serious health condition that impacts your total health. Scientists have discovered a link between gum disease and several other health conditions, including heart disease and diabetes. Periodontal disease is also dangerous for pregnant women, and may result in giving birth to a baby with a low birth weight.

If you have periodontal disease, we’ll discuss your treatment options with you. Your treatment will depend on how far the disease has progressed and your overall health. Each one of our patients is unique, and we treat you that way!

Early Gum Disease (Gingivitis)

In its earliest stages, gum disease is usually reversible with greater attention to home health care and a few small changes to your routine. For example, we can discuss your home routine and look for ways to improve your technique. We may also recommend adding an antimicrobial rinse or other products to treat the inflammation caused by the infection.

We may also ask you to come in more frequently for cleanings until the disease is well-controlled.

Later Stages (Periodontitis)

If gum disease is not addressed early, it will progress to a more serious condition called periodontitis. Once gum disease reaches this point, it can cause damage to your gum and bone tissue that may not be reversible. We will focus on halting the process of your disease, and we can also discuss restorative techniques to repair the damage.

Treatment at this stage will be a bit more assertive. Some of the treatments we may recommend include:

  • Deep cleanings – This procedure is known as scaling and root planing. We clean the roots of your teeth beneath your gum lines and smooth them out so that bacteria and other debris can’t cling to them. 
  • Antibiotics – One of the symptoms of advanced periodontal disease is pocketing around your teeth. These pockets tend to collect bacteria and debris. After your cleaning, we may place a special type of antibiotic into the pockets to kill any remaining bacteria.

In advanced cases, surgery may be necessary to restore the bone and gum tissue that periodontal disease destroys.

Why Should I Treat My Gum Disease?

It’s not known yet what precisely the connection is between gum disease and other systemic disease; at this point, scientists just know that there is a clear link that is not coincidental. One theory is that the bacteria that cause the inflammation and infection of gum disease create inflammation throughout the body since they can easily enter the bloodstream.

Gum disease has serious consequences for your oral health, as well. The disease destroys your soft gum tissue and your bone tissue. The bacteria cause bad breath. As the disease advances, your gums recede, and your teeth will become loose. In time, periodontal disease can cause you to lose your teeth.

We don’t want that to happen, of course, so we recommend regular cleanings to prevent gum disease and screenings for symptoms. Call our Fayetteville dental office today to schedule your next appointment! 

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