The Dangers of Gum Disease
Gum (periodontal) disease is an incredibly common condition, affecting one out of every two adults to some degree. When affected by gum disease, bacteria infect the hard and soft tissues in your mouth, leading to complications and even eventual tooth loss. The first stage of gum disease is called gingivitis, which is reversible if caught and treated early enough. If gingivitis is not treated, it advances to periodontitis and advanced periodontitis, which are irreversible conditions that lead to jaw bone and tooth loss. Research has also found links between gum disease and systemic health conditions like heart disease and diabetes, meaning if left untreated, the disease can affect other parts of your body. As common as gum disease is, it is easy to prevent with proper at home care and regular visits for cleanings and checkups to your dentist.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
- Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
- Constant bad breath (halitosis)
- Red, swollen gums
- Loose teeth
- Teeth sensitive to hot or cold beverages
- Gum recession
Effective Treatments for Gum Disease
At The Smile Centre, we take pride in offering multiple effective treatment options to best suit your needs and get your smile back to a healthy state. During the early stages of gum disease, gingivitis, we may be able to perform scaling and root planing treatment to remove the bacteria from below the gum line without having to use any scalpels or sutures. If gum disease has progressed past the gingivitis stage, we will have to perform more advanced procedures like osseous surgery or a gingivectomy. Osseous surgery involves the removal of infected gum tissue that surrounds infected teeth, a deep cleaning of the tooth roots, reshaping of the jaw bone that has been damaged and reattachment of healthy gum tissue to the teeth. Gingivectomy treatment is the surgical removal of infected gum tissue and reattachment of healthy gums using small sutures to hold them in place.
Prevention and Maintenance Keeps Disease at Bay
In order to prevent gum disease from ever developing, we recommend brushing and flossing your teeth at least twice a day or after every meal and visiting the dentist for cleanings at least twice a year. For those who have received advanced treatment for periodontitis, it is important to receive regular periodontal maintenance cleanings every three months. These routine cleanings help prevent gum disease from returning and keep your teeth and gums in a healthy, clean state. Our doctors are highly experienced in the treatment and prevention of gum disease. We believe in continuously training and learning new techniques, participating in hundreds of hours of dental seminars and continuing education courses. It is our priority to keep your mouth and smile healthy for a lifetime.