Periodontitis, also known as gum disease, is a serious infection of the gums that damages soft tissue such as your gums, and eventually destroys the bone that supports your teeth. Periodontitis typically causes your teeth to feel loose, but can also lead to complete tooth loss if it’s not managed correctly.
Thankfully, periodontitis is largely preventable and can be treated to a certain extent. It usually happens as a result of poor dental health and neglecting regular visits to a dentist for examinations. If you’re worried about your dental health and believe that you may have periodontitis, then Phoenix Periodontist would be more than happy to offer you a full consultation to help you overcome gum disease and give you peace of mind.
Periodontal treatments are typically carried about by a licensed periodontist such as Dr. Trujillo. The goal of periodontal treatment is usually to clean your teeth and remove any bacteria or infected tissue. The process changes depending on the stage of periodontal disease that you’re facing. For earlier stages, non-invasive procedures are generally preferred. They’re extremely effective at getting rid of bacteria in the mouth and will halt the progression of gum disease.
However, if periodontal disease is neglected or ignored, then it may require surgical procedures to help prevent it from spreading to the mouth or bones.
Can Periodontitis Be Cured?
Periodontitis isn’t something that can simply be cured. Instead, it’s considered an increasing health risk that gets worse as you age or neglect your dental health. It can be prevented with simple dental care habits, but it can also be treated to some extent by a skilled periodontist.
To increase your chances of treating periodontitis, it’s important to practice good oral health and understand common signs. For example, gingivitis is an early stage of gum disease where your gums become red, swell, and bleed easily. Periodontitis can still be reversed at this stage with careful daily brushing and flossing. In more advanced stages of periodontitis, the gums and bone can become seriously damaged and may eventually lead to the loss of teeth.
Three Non-Surgical Periodontal Treatments
There are three popular non-surgical periodontal treatments that can help you stop the progression of gum disease.
Laser Gum Treatment (LANAP)
Laser gum treatments, also known as Laser-Assisted New Attachment Procedure or LANAP, involve using a laser that is fired through a fiber optic cable to destroy infected tissue. The laser is programmed in a way that helps it recognize the difference between diseased and healthy tissue. This allows it to efficiently remove bad bacteria and leaves behind healthy tissue.
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a two-step process that can help remove plaque and bacteria from the teeth and gums. The scaling removes the plaque and tartar that sits below the gum line, and root planing smoothes the tooth root which helps your gums reattach to your tooth. This helps to remove bad bacteria which lessens the effect of gum disease but can also help strengthen loose teeth.
Another popular non-invasive option to treat periodontitis is to use antimicrobial medication. Periodontists use this form of oral treatment to reduce or eliminate the development of gum disease in your mouth. It involves the use of prescription antibiotics that can help to reduce infections. Periodontists typically only use these in severe cases, but there are a number of medications such as Clindamycin and Chlorhexidine which have proven to be effective at removing bad bacteria. Alternatively, a prescription for antiseptic mouthwashes can help control the production of bad bacteria in the mouth.
There are a variety of different treatments available for periodontal disease, but it’s important to consult a skilled periodontist such as Dr. Trujillo to help you pick the right treatment for your needs.
The 4 Stages of Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease falls into four different stages that indicate its severity and progression.
As explained earlier, gingivitis is the earliest stage of periodontal disease that is characterized by plaque buildup and bleeding gums. At this stage, the disease is completely reversible periodontists recommend their patients get regular dental exams and practice good oral health.
Slight Periodontal Disease
Slight periodontal disease is not reversible but it is manageable. Stage two is where the infection has spread to the bone and is beginning to destroy it. The bacteria are more aggressive and you’ll experience loose teeth and a receding gum line.
Moderate Periodontal Disease
The third stage of periodontal disease occurs when bacteria begin to attack the bone more aggressively and can also affect the bloodstream. Specialists will typically use scaling and root planing to clean the area in order to manage it.
Advanced Periodontal Disease
Lastly, advanced periodontal disease is the final stage where it causes teeth to be loose, severe bad breath, pain when chewing, and even gums that ooze pus. This requires laser surgery to provide a deep clean that gets rid of bacteria. It may also require the patient to remove infected teeth.
Visit a Periodontist for Treatment
Visiting a periodontist is one of the most effective ways for you to treat gum disease. It involves a full examination of your teeth and mouth to first understand your circumstances. Once that’s done, your periodontist will suggest the right treatment for your needs before consulting you further and eventually performing the procedure.
Skilled periodontists, such as Dr. Trujillo, understand that providing personalized and gentle care is extremely important to patients affected by gum disease. Having been in practice since 1997, Dr. Ariel Trujillo has worked with countless patients over the years to treat periodontitis and offer them peace of mind about their dental health for years to come.
If you’d like to learn more about periodontal treatment, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today for more information.