General and Cosmetic Dentistry Kerrisdale, Vancouver, BC
Treatment and maintenance of periodontal disease
At our kerrisdale office, we’ve diagnosed and treated many cases of periodontal, or gum disease. Gum disease is best treated when caught early on, before the infection has spread and caused damage to the gums, teeth and surrounding tissues. Periodontal disease attacks the gums and the bone that support the teeth. However, there are treatments available that are effective for advanced stage gum diseases.
Gingivitis often precedes gum disease, but that doesn’t mean that every case of gum disease is caused by gingivitis. Some patients are genetically predisposed to developing gum disease. Good oral hygiene is the best defense against developing gum disease. Plaque can build up in as little as 12 hours after brushing. Plaque is a sticky film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva. If plaque is not removed, it turns into calculus (tartar). When plaque and calculus are not removed, gingivitis and gum disease have a chance to develop.
Gum disease is characterised by red, swollen and bleeding gums. Symptoms are sometimes silent in the beginning stages of gum disease, so often times once patients have begun to feel discomfort the condition has already progressed. Untreated gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. In addition, there is a link between periodontal disease and other diseases such as, stroke, bacterial pneumonia, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and increased risk during pregnancy. Regular dental visits for routine cleanings and exams are advised, especially for patients who are prone to gum disease.
The first course of action when treating gum disease is usually a deep cleaning known as scaling and root planing. This procedure thoroughly cleans the pockets below the gum line where plaque and bacteria have accumulated. Once the area is cleaned, the gums and tissues can begin to heal. In more progressed cases, periodontal surgery may be necessary to restore damaged tissues.
After your gum disease has been successfully treated, we will give you instructions on how to prevent a recurrence. A good oral hygiene routine is the first step towards preventing gum disease. Also, a healthy balanced diet and restriction of alcohol consumption is also advised – this will help keep your teeth, bones and immune system in an overall healthy state.
If you are experiencing some of the symptoms of gum disease, call us to schedule an appointment as soon as possible.