Periodontitis, or periodontal disease, develops when the bacteria on your teeth and gums is not removed with regular brushing, flossing, and professional teeth cleanings by your family dentist. The first signs of early-stage gum disease (or gingivitis) are swollen, tender gums that bleed easily, painful chewing, tooth sensitivity, and bad breath. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact Trillium Dental to schedule an appointment in Ottawa, or continue reading to learn more.
We are fortunate to live in a time where dental technology is quite advanced and dental treatments are becoming more widely available. Thanks to these technological advancements, many patients with gingivitis can reverse their symptoms with thorough brushing and flossing in addition to thorough dental cleanings. Not only that, but today’s dentists are now able to offer the following gingivitis treatments for patients who are exhibiting mild gum disease:
- Root planing. Root planing, or root scaling, is a dental technique that your dentist uses to scrape plaque and tartar away from the gum line during your teeth cleaning appointment. Over time, bacteria turns to plaque, which calcifies into hard, sticky tartar that can only be removed via root planing. If ignored, tartar eats away at the tooth enamel and causes inflammation of the surrounding gum tissue, which leads to gum disease. However, when tartar is professionally removed, it gives the teeth and gums a chance to heal.
- Gum lasering. Gum lasering is the next step in treating gingivitis. This non-invasive dental treatment involves lasers killing the bacteria along the gum line as well as removing any dead or diseased tissue. By ridding the area of disease, this method encourages the gums to reattach to the surrounding teeth rather than continuing to recede. Gum lasering can also reduce your chances of having to undergo a more extensive gum disease procedure down the line, like periodontal surgery.
- Crown lengthening. Crown lengthening procedures are performed if the surrounding teeth do not have enough surface space for the gums to attach to (as is often the case for patients with a “gummy smile”). Sometimes, this happens when teeth are broken or if a dental filling comes undone, leaving a damaged or decayed tooth exposed. If this is the case, your dentist will use a laser to contour the gums in order to expose more of the tooth surface so that the gums can reattach themselves to a clean, bacteria-free surface.
It is important to note that these gingivitis treatments are not meant to recover bone loss and may not fully restore the gum tissue that holds the teeth in place. This is where more involved periodontal treatments come into play, which aim to remove dead tissue, prevent further damage, and help the mouth tissue start to heal.
Periodontal treatments are for patients who have moderate to severe cases of gum disease that require more extensive procedures. Often, these treatments involve oral surgery with local anesthesia, so patients typically have a longer recovery time. One of the main periodontal treatments used today is called a gingivectomy, which is a surgical procedure that involves the complete removal of dead gum tissue. Periodontal disease is harder to reverse in severe cases, but this is a good option for patients who are willing to commit to establishing a better oral health care routine with frequent trips to the dentist for professional teeth cleanings.
BOOK A GUM DISEASE TREATMENT IN OTTAWA
The longer your gum disease symptoms persist, the harder they will be to treat and reverse. If you think you are developing any of the symptoms listed in the beginning of this post, we highly recommend that you visit our family dental clinic right away. Contact us by phone, or book an appointment online at one of our eight dental offices in Ottawa.