Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, is a progressive condition that can lead to tooth loss if left untreated. It begins when plaque, a sticky film of bacteria, forms on your teeth. If the plaque is not removed, it hardens and turns into tartar. The tartar collects along the gum line and causes the gums to become inflamed and pull away from the tooth structure. If the condition is not treated, it can progress to more advanced stages, where it then causes irreversible damage and becomes incurable.
Gum disease can be prevented with proper oral hygiene and regular professional dental cleanings; in its early stages, this treatment alone can actually reverse the condition.
If you think you might have gum disease, it’s important to visit our office as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent the condition from progressing further and causing serious damage to your teeth and gums. Call our office in Riverside, CA, today to schedule an appointment!
Symptoms & Stages Of Gum Disease
The first stage of gum disease is called gingivitis. If you have gingivitis, you may notice the following symptoms:
- Swollen, tender gum tissue
- Gums that bleed when flossing or brushing
- Slight gum recession
- Bad breath
While gingivitis can be treated with proper oral hygiene, the condition is incurable once it has progressed.
Periodontitis is the next stage of gum disease. If you have advanced to this stage, your gums and the bone that supports your teeth may already be experiencing damage. While periodontitis cannot be cured, we offer many treatment options in our office to manage the condition and prevent further progression. The symptoms of periodontitis include:
- Gums that are red, swollen, or bleed easily
- Persistent bad breath
- Receding gums
- Loose teeth
- Painful chewing
The last stage of gum disease is advanced periodontitis. By this stage, your gums and jawbone may be severely damaged. Additionally, you may begin to lose teeth. The symptoms of advanced periodontitis include:
- Extreme gum recession
- Accumulation of pus along the gum line
- Tooth sensitivity
- Tooth loss
Scaling & Root Planing
Scaling and root planing, often called a deep cleaning, is a procedure performed in our office to clean plaque and tartar from teeth both above and below the gum line. This type of cleaning is necessary when traditional brushing and flossing methods are not enough to remove all the buildup, and it can help to manage gum disease once it has advanced beyond gingivitis.
- The scaling part of the procedure involves using special instruments to remove plaque and tartar from the teeth.
- The root planing part of the procedure involves smoothing out the rough spots on the roots of the teeth where plaque and tartar have accumulated and caused damage. This helps to prevent future buildup and can also help the gums heal and reattach to the teeth.
Pocket Reduction Surgery
Pocket reduction surgery is a treatment we provide for advanced stages of gum disease. As the gums become inflamed and pull away from the teeth, this can create pockets of infection that can damage the bone and connective tissue surrounding the tooth structure.
Pocket reduction surgery involves surgically pulling back the gum tissue to remove the bacteria accumulation that is collected around the teeth. We will also gently remove any diseased tissue from the region before suturing the healthy gums back in place. This helps to reduce the size of the pockets and also makes it easier to clean the teeth and keep them free of bacteria in the future.
Gum grafts are a common treatment utilized for patients that suffer from the effects of gum disease, and it is typically performed to combat gum recession. Once the gum tissue has recessed, it, unfortunately, is unable to regenerate and a sensitive root portion of the tooth is left exposed. This can cause pain, temperature sensitivity, and greater vulnerability to decay.
The gum graft involves taking tissue from another part of the mouth and attaching it to the gums where the recession has occurred. This can help to improve the appearance of the smile and also provides additional support for the teeth. In some cases, gum grafts may be necessary to prevent further bone loss.
Fighting For Your Smile Health
Gum disease is a serious oral health problem that can lead to tooth loss and other serious dental problems. That’s why it’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible when you notice any symptoms of gum disease.
At Gold Coast Dental, we offer comprehensive gum disease treatment and management services. Our team is here for you seven days a week and capable of fitting you into our schedule, especially when gum disease poses a threat to your smile.
Our team will work with you to determine the best treatment for your situation to keep your smile protected. Don’t delay in getting gum disease treatment! Contact Gold Coast Dental today.