3 Types of Treatment for Gum Disease

Gum Disease Sacramento, CA

Gum disease starts with the growth of bacteria in the mouth. When brushing or flossing does not remove this bacteria, harmful plaque accumulates and hardens into tartar. The collection of tartar along the gum line results in gingivitis, which can worsen into periodontal disease. Symptoms of this disease can be mild in the early stages, so many patients do not seek care until they reach the advanced stages.

Although gum disease is a preventable condition, it remains one of the leading oral diseases in the United States. In some cases, tooth loss from advanced periodontitis is inevitable. However, with early intervention, a dentist can offer patients treatments to prevent tooth loss. Patients need to understand all treatment options so they can make an informed decision.

Common gum disease treatments

There are two main types of treatment for periodontal disease: non-surgical and surgical. Non-surgical treatment is often the first line of defense against gum disease. However, in cases of severe periodontitis, a dentist may recommend surgical treatment. There are also cosmetic treatments for gum disease that can help a patient feel more confident when smiling.

If your gum disease is in the early stages, the removal of plaque and tartar from above and below the gums may help to halt the progression of the disease and prevent the development of additional problems. This is an important diagnostic and preventive step to take prior to engaging in more extensive treatments.

1. Scaling and root planing

A type of non-surgical periodontal therapy is scaling and root planing. During this procedure, a dentist or hygienist uses scalers and curettes to clean below the gumline. These instruments remove plaque and calculus from the teeth and root surfaces.

The goal of this treatment is to disrupt harmful, disease-causing bacteria that accumulate under the gums, where it is difficult to reach with brushing alone. The dentist or hygienist may perform the procedure over several appointments, so the patient must commit to the treatment. Once the periodontal therapy is complete, the dentist and hygienist instruct the patient on proper home care for the teeth and gums. 

2. Laser periodontal therapy

The National Institute of Health notes that dentists first began using dental lasers in the 1960s. However, dentists did not use lasers for periodontal treatment until the 1990s. This relatively new invention has transformed the way that dentists treat gum disease.

Laser periodontal therapy is another non-surgical intervention that dentists use to restore patients to periodontal health. The bacteria responsible for periodontal disease destroy the attachment of the gum tissue to the teeth. The goal of laser treatment is to eliminate harmful bacteria and encourage reattachment of the gums to the teeth to prevent future issues.

3. Gingival grafting and contouring

Periodontitis can cause gum recession, which makes the teeth look longer than before. Gingival grafting, a type of periodontal surgery, can cover the exposed root surfaces caused by gum recession. Because the root surface is softer than enamel, it is more sensitive. It can also be more prone to dental decay. Covering these surfaces with a gingival graft can be beneficial for the patient's overall dental health.

Some forms of gum disease can also cause gingival overgrowth, making the teeth look smaller than before. A dentist can use a laser to remove excess dental tissue. Alternatively, they may perform a surgical procedure known as a gingivectomy to eliminate extra gum tissue.

Other treatments

Additional surgical treatments are available for periodontal disease, including pocket reduction surgery, in which the gums are lifted and tartar is removed from under them. This procedure decreases the space between the teeth and gums, lessening the potential for harmful bacteria growth. This type of surgery may be combined with guided tissue regeneration, which inserts a piece of mesh between the bone and gums to prevent the gum tissue from intruding on the bone area. This enables the connective tissue to re-grow and improve support for the teeth. 

Antibiotic treatments may be combined with surgery or implemented as a solo treatment to reduce the bacteria growth that accompanies gum disease. Prescription medication chlorhexidine is available as a rinse or slow-release chip to control plaque and gingivitis. 

Conclusion

Gum disease is a chronic dental condition that can easily become advanced with very little warning. By maintaining proper oral hygiene and visiting the dentist regularly for professional cleaning and checkups, patients can ensure they receive an early diagnosis of gingivitis before it progresses to more serious stages. Once periodontitis becomes an issue, patients should partner with their dentist to determine the safest and right course of treatment.

Request an appointment here: https://www.sacramentosleepdentist.com or call Dental Excellence of Greenhaven at (916) 293-0504 for an appointment in our Sacramento office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Gum Disease in Sacramento, CA.

Recent Posts

Is Gum Disease Preventable?

Gum disease is one of the most common oral health issues. Many individuals, however, are unaware that they are dealing with the condition. Gum disease is believed to affect millions of adults in the United States, according to the International Journal of Health Sciences. Many people who do not currently have gum disease may develop…

A General Dentist In Sacramento Describes Healthy Gums

One important fact every general dentist agrees with is that oral health is a crucial part of your general wellbeing. Certain habits contribute positively to gum health, and all of them revolve around excellent oral hygiene. In this article, a dentist explains the characteristics of healthy gums and how to maintain excellent oral health.There are…

Why Do I Have Receding Gums?

A diagnosis of receding gums can be confusing and worrying to many dental patients. Officially known as gingival recession, this situation is usually identified by sensitivity in the teeth, exposed tooth roots and a loose feeling in a tooth or multiple teeth. Sometimes, the gums may bleed regularly or appear swollen and red in color.…

Are You At Risk For Gum Disease?

Some years ago, many people believed that aging was the biggest cause of gum disease. Today, we know that aging itself is not the culprit of gum disease. There are other factors can make you more susceptible. Fortunately, learning about the risk factors and adopting preventive care methods is effective for preventing the disease.Periodontal disease…

Recent Posts

Is Every Six Months Enough For A Dental Checkup?

Is Every Six Months Enough For A Dental Checkup?

Although a dentist provides services on a patient-by-patient basis, the one thing strongly encouraged for everyone is to have a dental checkup every six months. This schedule is what the industry recommends and for good reasons. While some dentists agree this is sufficient, others feel that under certain circumstances a person should visit a clinic…

Teeth Cleanings As A Part Of Routine Dental Care

Teeth Cleanings As A Part Of Routine Dental Care

Many people today think professional teeth cleaning is optional and its purpose is primarily to keep the smile bright. In fact, it should be part of routine dental care. Getting a cleaning from a dental professional is important for both the appearance and health of the entire mouth.Even those who brush and floss twice daily…