The Gum Solution: Strategies For Periodontal Health

Dental disease is a result of poor oral hygiene, in addition to bacteria and plaque accumulation. These oral health issues commonly cause tooth loss if not treated promptly. What follows is impaired oral function and compromised aesthetics. 

Alpine Dental Center brings you comprehensive dental care that aims at detecting the disease at an early stage and providing treatment based on the severity of your condition.

An introduction to periodontal disease and its stages

Periodontal disease, or gum disease is a dental condition that is characterized by an infection and inflammation of the supporting tissues that hold your teeth in place. It may begin as a mild swelling of your gums and may progress to bone loss due to continuous tissue destruction. Eventually, it may cause loss of attachment and tooth mobility.

There are two distinctive stages, namely:

  1. Gingivitis: Reversible stage, involving swelling and reddening of the gum tissue.
  2. Periodontitis: Advanced stage with gum erosion, bone loss, and tooth mobility.   

An insight into the causes

Bacteria are the most common disease-causing agent that leads to excess formation of plaque that adheres to the tooth surfaces. As the infection spreads it can erode the gums and destroy the underlying jawbone. 

Risk factors:

  1. Hereditary 
  2. Poor oral hygiene
  3. Hormonal imbalance (puberty, pregnancy, menopause)
  4. Smoking
  5. Stress and depression
  6. Medications such as immunosuppressants and those that reduce saliva production 
  7. Certain autoimmune diseases like lupus

Knowing the symptoms of periodontal disease

Periodontal disease presents with some striking signs and symptoms that help diagnose the disease clinically. These include:

  1. Red, swollen gums
  2. Tender painful gums
  3. Halitosis (bad breath)
  4. Diastema (gaps between teeth)
  5. Pain when chewing 
  6. Poor bite due to malocclusion 
  7. Receding gums
  8. Increased tooth sensitivity 
  9. Loose teeth

Exploring the treatments of periodontal disease

Treatment usually depends on the stage and severity of the condition. Your dentist may recommend any of the following options:

  • Non-surgical (mild to moderate cases)
  • Professional dental cleaning 
      1. Supragingival cleaning 
      2. Deep subgingival scaling 
      3. Root planing
  • Medications 
      1. Antibiotic gels
      2. Antimicrobial mouth rinse
  • Gingival pocket irrigation 
    1. Oral irrigators 
  • Surgical (moderate to severe cases)
  • Pocket elimination surgery
      1.  A flap surgery to reduce the size of the gingival pocket between the gums and the teeth.
  • Tissue regeneration
      1. A biocompatible membrane is inserted into the affected area to promote regeneration of the tissues.
  • Gum grafting
      1. This method can reattach the lost gingival tissues by using a gum graft from other areas of your mouth.
  • Bone grafting
      1. Aids in bone regrowth using graft material.
  • Dental implants 
    1. Replace lost teeth by mimicking the tooth roots to anchor permanent restorations like crowns, and dentures.

Periodontal disease can be reversed if detected and treated on time with the right treatment option that best suits your individual condition.