Traditionally, painful and intrusive surgery has been the only remedy available for patients with severe periodontal disease. These procedures involve the cutting and suturing of the gums and may require several days of recovery before a patient is back to full health. The fear of pain and being unable to work may deter some people from having much-needed treatment which could cause tooth loss and other problems. Recently, a number of alternatives to gum surgery have been developed offering minimal pain and a fast recovery time.
The Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP®) is an FDA-approved procedure to treat gum disease. There is no cutting or suturing involved–a laser is used to remove diseased areas of the gums, while leaving the healthy areas intact. LANAP® can be performed in one setting unlike traditional surgery which may require 2 to 3 visits to the dentist. Recovery time is also less than 24 hours. LANAP® is also a safe alternative for patients with hematologic disorders, diabetes, or who are taking blood thinners.
Antimicrobial treatments are a cheap, non-invasive, and virtually painless alternative to traditionally surgery. Dentists perform a deep cleaning under the gums and prescribe a short course of antibiotics. This may also help to prevent future infections. Patients considering this procedure should be careful if they are already on an antibiotic treatment.
After any kind of treatment for gum disease, patients should work to prevent the disease from coming back. Follow the basic dental care rules of brushing and flossing, and also follow any after-care directions given to you by your dentist. Regular periodontal examinations are also important.
Being diagnosed with severe periodontal disease does not automatically mean that you will lose your teeth, be in pain, or have to endure a painful surgery. There are many alternatives to gum surgery that your dentist can discuss with you. If you are interested in learning more about LANAP®, antimicrobial treatments, or any other type of gum treatment, contact Miami Perio today at (305) 447-1447.