Gum Treatment | Glyfada
What is gum treatment
Gum disease is a very common condition where the gums become swollen, sore or infected. If you have gum disease, your gums may bleed when you brush your teeth and you may have bad breath. This early stage of gum disease is known as gingivitis.
If gingivitis is not treated, a condition called periodontitis can develop. This affects the tissues that support teeth and hold them in place.
If periodontitis is not treated, the bone in your jaw may be damaged and small spaces can open up between the gum and teeth.
Your teeth can become loose and may eventually fall out. Periodontitis is a major cause of teeth/implant loss.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by a build-up of plaque on the teeth. Plaque is a sticky substance that contains bacteria. Some bacteria in plaque are harmless, but some are harmful for the health of your gums. If you do not remove plaque from your teeth by brushing them, or floss them daily, it builds up and trap bacteria and irritates your gums. This can lead to redness with bleeding, swelling and soreness. Immediate treatment is necessary to prevent further damage and tooth loss. Gum disease usually progresses slowly and painlessly, meaning it can take years
for sufferers to realise there is a problem-but it is easier to treat when it’s caught earlier. If properly treated, gum disease may be reversed.
Seeing your dentist
You should make an appointment to see your dentist if your gums are painful, swollen, or bleed when you brush your teeth.
Your dentist can carry out a thorough dental examination to check the health of your gums, which may involve inserting a thin metal stick with a bend in 1 end (periodontal probe) beside your teeth.
In some cases, a number of x-rays may be needed to check the condition of your teeth and jaw bone.
Preventing and treating gum disease
Mild cases of gum disease can usually be treated by maintaining a good level of oral hygiene. This includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing regularly. You should also make sure you go for regular dental check-ups. In most cases, your dentist or dental hygienist will be able to give your teeth a thorough clean and remove any hardened plaque (tartar).
They ‘ll also be able to show you how to clean your teeth effectively to help prevent plaque building up in the future.
If you have severe gum disease, you'll usually need to have further medical and dental treatment.
In some cases, surgery may need to be carried out. This will usually be performed by a specialist in gum problems (periodontist).
It’s important to have regular dental check-ups so any problems with your teeth and gums can be detected and treated early.
If you have never had gum disease and have good oral health, you may only need to visit your dentist once a year for a check-up.
You may need to visit your dentist more frequently if you have had problems with gum disease in the past.
At each appointment your dentist will advise when you need your next appointment.
If you have an increased risk of developing gum problems (for example, you smoke or have diabetes), you may be advised to visit your dentist more often so your teeth and gums can be closely monitored.
Complications of gum disease
If you have untreated gum disease that develops into periodontitis, it can lead to further complications.
1. painful collections of pus (abscesses)
2. receding gums
3. loose teeth
4. loss of teeth
How to treat gum disease?
Scaling and Root Planning
The early stages of gum disease may only require non-surgical treatment. The most well- known type of non-surgical treatment is known as scaling and root planning, a minor procedure involves a careful removal of plaque and tarter from the affected gums, and smooth the tooth root to remove any bacterial toxins. During this procedure, your hygienist will remove harmful bacteria and irritants from deep beneath your gums to prevent plaque from accumulating again. Most patients will not need any further treatment, although we recommend visiting our hygienists regularly to maintain your oral health.
Pocket Depth Reduction
Periodontal disease damages these tissues and bones supporting the tooth, leaving open spaces around the teeth known as ‘pockets’. The larger these pockets are, the easier it is for bacteria to collect inside them, causing more bone and tissue loss. Without treatment, the
supportive structure degrades to the point that the tooth either falls out or needs to be removed.
We can avoid this with a minor procedure to take the harmful bacteria out of these pockets. We fold back the gum tissue, remove the bacteria hiding underneath, as well as the hardened plaque and tartar that have collected. We then secure the gum tissue back in place. We also smooth any irregular surfaces of the damaged bone to limit the areas where bacteria can live, making it easier for your gums to reattach to healthy bone.
Plaque, a sticky film, continuously forms on tooth surfaces. Once your periodontal treatment has been completed, we recommend you book periodontal cleanings by a hygienist or dentist every six months’ time