What is periodontal disease (gum disease)?
Accumulating plaque and calculus, when left undisturbed, cause inflammation of tissues surrounding the tooth. In the early stage of periodontal disease, called gingivitis, inflammation is limited to the gums, rendering them swollen, sensitive, and bleeding easily. Although this condition in some cases may be induced or aggravated by general health issues, in most cases it can be successfully treated with regular dental cleaning and proper oral hygiene.
When inflammation is significant and persists for long time, it leads to gradual destruction of bone that supports the teeth, leading to a condition called periodontitis. Thus, the pockets between teeth and surrounding tissue become deeper and trap more food and plaque, leading to more inflammation and bone destruction. Deep pocket environment attracts bacteria that are even more deleterious than the regular plaque, accelerating the disease. Extensive destruction of bone can lead to loosening and eventual loss of teeth. Severe chronic inflammation in the pockets causes pain and malodor, may lead to abscesses, and existing evidence indicates it may have aggravate cardiovascular conditions and diabetes. You can learn more about periodontitis by clicking onto this link
In some cases development of periodontitis can be abrupt and caused by certain bacteria that can be controlled by antibiotic prescription. However, the majority of patients suffer from the chronic form of disease which requires treatment by mechanical removal of plaque and calculus, in a procedure called Scaling and Root Planning (SRP) or deep cleaning.
Scaling and Root Planing
We will use sonic and handheld instruments to eradicate plaque and calculus built up on the roots of the teeth, and to remove diseased soft tissue from the pockets. Roots will be planed smooth to facilitate reattachment of gums to the teeth. In some cases, administration of long-acting antibiotic suspension into the pockets will be recommended to reduce inflammation and promote healing. Local anesthesia will be administered as necessary to make the entire procedure as stress-free as possible. Patients suffering from periodontitis require check-ups and maintenance at intervals shorter that the regular 6 month exams, usually every 3-4 months.