What is Gum Disease?
Also known as periodontal disease or periodontitis, gum disease is when the soft tissue which holds your teeth in place becomes infected. It is caused by a buildup of plaque and tartar in the mouth as a result of poor oral hygiene. At Oak Creek Dental Care, we can monitor your teeth and gums for signs of tooth decay, gingivitis, and gum disease so you can practice prevention and early detection.
When food particles are left behind in the mouth due to improper or infrequent brushing and flossing, this leads to a buildup of plaque. Once you have a buildup of plaque in the mouth, the only way it can be removed is through professional cleaning. This is why regular 6-month dental visits are so important.
Early-stage gum disease is known as gingivitis. If it is left untreated, it can develop into gum disease and if gum disease is left untreated, it will lead to deterioration of the tissue holding your teeth in place. This will lead to your teeth becoming loose in their socket and may result in needing an extraction.
What to Expect From Periodontal Treatment
Treating gum disease involves different levels of treatment depending on how severe your gum disease is. All cases of gum disease will need to be deep cleaned to remove the source of the gum disease: plaque and tartar buildup. Infection is removed from the gum, teeth, and mouth and may need to be treated with antibiotics.
If the gum disease was minor, then deep cleaning may be enough to reverse it. However, when gum disease is more extensive, it may warrant oral surgery. Gum grafting and reshaping is an option to treat gum disease by rebuilding the gum tissue around your teeth.
Soft tissue from inside of your mouth the roof of your mouth will be placed where your gums above your teeth are to protect them from damage and make it more comfortable to eat and drink.
Another gum surgery is called gum flap surgery. This is a method of cleaning the roots of your tooth and repairing bone damage that the gum disease has caused. Your gums are pulled back so the oral surgeon can get into the roots of the teeth to clean them and repair the bone. Your gums will be sewn back into place.
How to Prevent Gum Disease
The best method of preventing gum disease is to practice proper oral hygiene. You need to brush your teeth properly and thoroughly, for at least 2 minutes twice a day. If you find that you struggle to brush your teeth long enough, try investing in an electric toothbrush which helps do some of the work for you.
You should also floss once a day to remove food particles from in between your teeth which lead to plaque formation. If you don’t like using traditional floss, you can try a floss pick or a water flosser. Finally, make sure you are returning to the dentist every 6 months for a cleaning and checkup.
Schedule a Preventative Cleaning & Checkup at Oak Creek Dental Care Today!
During your dental cleaning and checkup, we can take x-rays of your mouth and look for early warning signs of gum disease. We use a scaler to scrape away the buildup of plaque and tartar which lead to gum disease.
Bi-annual cleanings and checkups promote early detection and prevention and are your best bet for fighting against gum disease. Contact us to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ehsan Saleki.