When gum or bone health becomes endangered, the longevity of teeth are also subjected to significant risk. The field of periodontics addresses these health concerns in a number of ways, aiming to restore health to the periodontal tissues and replace lost bone, gum tissue and teeth. From periodontal disease treatment to dental implant placement, periodontics eliminates disease and returns form and function to the smile.

Periodontal Treatment Restores Health to Gum Tissues

Periodontal disease is an oral infection caused by hundreds of harmful bacteria residing beneath the gum line, causing deterioration of the gums, periodontal ligament (a group of fibers connecting the tooth to its bony socket) and underlying bone tissue. Such damage, especially if a significant amount has occurred, renders these structures less able to provide necessary support for the teeth. Periodontal disease is widespread, affecting nearly three-quarters of the adult population in the United States alone, and is the primary cause of adult tooth loss.

The prevalence of this progressive condition has given rise to a variety of effective treatments set on targeting and eliminating disease-causing oral bacteria and their hiding places. The following treatments for periodontal disease are often performed based on the severity and progression of the oral condition:

  • LANAP® Laser Therapy: Utilizing the PerioLase® MVP-7™ laser, the LANAP® protocol treats periodontal disease by vaporizing diseased gum tissue and the bacteria causing the infection. The treatment is minimally invasive and does not require the use of incisions or sutures.
  • Osseous/Flap Surgery: Cases of advanced periodontitis are often treated with osseous surgery. Osseous surgery allows for direct access to tooth roots and underlying bone tissue through gum tissue retraction, enabling the periodontist to remove tooth surface tartar deposits and bony discrepancies and promoting tissue reattachment.
  • Scaling and Root Planing: Scaling and root planing therapy is a non-surgical method for treating periodontitis. Plaque and tartar deposits housing bacteria are removed from above and below the gum line, while the root surfaces are smoothed to encourage gum tissue reattachment to tooth structure.
  • Periodontal Maintenance: Following treatment of periodontal disease, the gum tissues and disease-causing bacteria need to be well-managed to keep the infection from recurring. This objective is accomplished through periodontal maintenance programs, which involve thorough below the gum cleanings along with monitoring of tissue health and periodontal pocket depths. Periodontal maintenance appointments typically occur every three to four months.

When to Visit a Periodontist

Periodontal procedures restore health and harmony to teeth, bone, gum tissues and the overall smile. Any concerns regarding the presence of periodontal disease, missing teeth, bone loss or gum recession should be discussed with a periodontist or dentist, who can offer sound solutions to achieving long-term oral health.

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