If you have gum disease, don’t be embarrassed. According to the CDC, 64.7 million adults who are 30 or older have gum disease. You are definitely not in the minority when it comes to this common oral disease. Of the entire U.S. population, 30 percent have a moderate form of the disease, while close to nine percent have a severe case. Those with the mildest form make up 8.7 percent of the population.
After hearing your dentist say you have gum disease, it’s time to take action. Treating the disease in its early stages is best. Depending on the severity, you may be able to treat gum disease without any need for surgery. Here are the best options for treating gum disease.
Make an Appointment with a Periodontist
Don’t let embarrassment or fear keep you from seeking treatment. Your first step should be to arrange a consultation with a periodontist. If fear of dentists is a problem, look for a periodontist who specializes in sedation dentistry.
During the consultation, you will learn more about the best treatment methods for the stage of gum disease. You may also undergo a thorough cleaning or schedule an appointment for this cleaning, depending on the length of the appointment.
Cleaning the Teeth
During the teeth cleaning appointment, tartar and plaque deposits are scaled from below the gum line. The exposed tooth roots may also be planed in order for the gum to reattach to the teeth as they heal.
Control the Bacteria behind Gum Disease
Regardless of the severity of your gum disease, your periodontist is likely to have you start using a special anti-microbial rinse to help impede bacterial growth. You may also be given an antibiotic gel or chip for oral use that also controls bacterial growth and allows the gums to start healing.
When there are deep pockets along the gum and teeth, it’s hard for anyone to get deep enough to truly clean these areas. If that is the case, a surgical treatment becomes necessary. You have options when it comes to periodontal surgery.
When the gums begin to pull away from the teeth, bacteria enter and create infection. With gingival improvement grafting, tissue is surgically grafted to cover the exposed tooth root. While the tissue was once harvested from the roof of your mouth, periodontists can now use accellular dermal grafts to prevent the need for a second surgical site within the mouth.
Plasma Rich Growth Factors (PRGF) enable periodontists to help your gum and bone tissue regenerate. You’ll find PRGF used with gingival improvement grafting and guided tissue regeneration, a process that protects your healing gums and bone tissue with an artificial membrane that may have to be surgically removed or it may be absorbed by your body over time.
LANAP® treatments are not offered in every periodontal office, so it’s worth looking for a periodontist who uses LANAP®. This laser procedure eliminates the need for surgical incisions and sutures. Laser is directed into the pocket to kill bacteria, remove plaque and tarter, and then create a surface that the gum will reattach to. It’s a fast procedure, leaves you feeling little discomfort, and shortens your recovery time.
After your gum disease treatments, you need to make appointments with your periodontist three or four times a year. By continually monitoring the condition of your gums, you stand a much better chance of not losing teeth to gum disease.
Prior to your appointment with Miami periodontists Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas, take time to fill out the patient information form. At Gallardo & Lamas Periodontics and Implant Dentistry, your comfort is important. Dr. Gallardo and Dr. Lamas offer sedation dentistry techniques and also offer the less invasive LANAP® laser surgery for gum disease. Call the office at (305) 447-1447 to schedule an appointment.