If you or someone you know is considering treatment for periodontal disease, do some research on the procedure or treatment. Perio.org has information about the latest research and treatment options available. You may also want to talk to friends or relatives who have had periodontal treatment about their experiences. By learning about different treatment plans, you will be prepared to discuss your options with your periodontist.
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Periodontal disease is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the gums and bone supporting the teeth, and has been associated with the progression of other diseases such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. If you opt for a treatment for periodontal disease that has not been backed by scientific evidence, it’s possible that the treatment won’t effectively treat (or could even worsen) your condition. Just because a treatment is deemed “new” or “innovative” doesn’t mean that it works properly or better than more traditional treatments. By choosing the quick fix route first, your oral health may remain in poor condition and you may require additional treatment.
Instead, a better idea is to schedule an appointment with a periodontist when you notice signs of periodontal disease (red, swollen or tender gums; bleeding while brushing or flossing; gums that are receding or pulling away from the teeth; loose or separating teeth). A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of periodontal disease and in the placement of dental implants. Periodontists receive extensive training in these areas, including three additional years of education beyond dental school. They are familiar with the latest techniques for diagnosing and treating periodontal disease, and their education and experience allow them to effectively treat periodontal disease using clinically proven treatments such as scaling and root planing, soft tissue grafts and regenerative procedures. A periodontist will evaluate your unique condition, and offer the treatment that is best for you; one that is supported by both science and experience. Your periodontist can also answer any questions that you may have about alternate treatment options.
Your oral health is invaluable. While quick fixes for periodontal disease may seem like a good option, it’s a better idea to research treatment options and discuss them with a periodontist first. The discussion has the possibility of saving you time and money in the long-run!
The American Academy of Periodontology Patient Page is a public service of the AAP and should not be used as a substitute for the care and advice of your personal periodontist. There may be variations in treatment that your periodontist will recommend based on individual facts and circumstances. Visit perio.org to assess your risk and for more information on periodontal disease.
AAP Patient Page