Conquer gum disease and get your vibrant smile.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease, also known as periodontitis, is the inflammation of tissue surrounding the teeth, including the supporting bone tissue. It is caused by the presence of bacteria (plaque) on the tooth surface that has migrated beneath the gums where toothbrush bristles and floss cannot reach. If untreated, gum disease can result in abscesses and even tooth loss.
What are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
Typical signs of gum disease include
- Bleeding gums while brushing or flossing
- Swollen or “puffy” gums
- Halitosis or bad breath
- Gum recession where the roots of the teeth are exposed
- Loose teeth or teeth that shift position
- Widening or new gaps between teeth
What can be Done to Treat Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a chronic condition, not unlike diabetes, for which there is no cure. The goal of periodontal treatment is to control or eliminate risk factors to prevent it from getting worse and leading to tooth loss.
There are different methods of treatment, most of which focus on the removal of bacteria on the tooth surface beneath the gums. Regardless of the type of treatment, regular professional cleanings and proper daily oral hygiene is essential for the success of any periodontal therapy.
Typically the first step in treating gum disease is a procedure called scaling and root planing. Unlike a regular dental cleaning that focuses on removing plaque and tartar from the crowns of teeth (above the gums), this procedure also focuses on cleaning the roots of the teeth (below the gums). Removing bacteria from the root surface of the tooth (beneath the gums) helps to eliminate inflammation in the gums and bone around the tooth. It also gives the gums a chance to reattach to the tooth surface, preventing bacteria from travelling beneath the gums again.
Another non-surgical option to treat gum disease are antibiotics or antimicrobial rinses to control the growth of the bacteria causing the gum disease.
Surgery may be required in cases of more advanced disease where the plaque and tartar are physically too far beneath the gums to be removed with scaling and root planing. In these cases, surgical treatment can be utilized to access the roots and allow removal of bacteria. Surgical treatment also provides an opportunity to regenerate bone around the teeth, giving them more support. Without surgical treatment advanced cases of gum disease may progress leading to infection, bone destruction and tooth loss.
SMILE WITH US
At CCP we are committed to providing excellent periodontal care to Calgarians. Most patients are referred to our Calgary clinic by their general dentist, however a referral is not necessary. Simply request an appointment to schedule your consultation.