Receding gums are the most common reason that a patient may undergo a gum graft. When gums begin to recede, they expose the roots of the teeth, which in turn can cause the teeth to decay more quickly and cause increased sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. A graft can correct the problem by replacing…
What Is Periodontics?
Periodontics is a very important branch of dentistry. It involves the treatment of diseases of the tissues supporting and surrounding the teeth. Periodontics also focuses on the prevention and treatment of gum disease. Gum disease, which is also commonly referred to as periodontal disease, is very common in the United States. The different forms of gum disease can affect your overall oral health.
Periodontal diseases are bacterial infections of the bone, gums, as well as the periodontal ligament. They destroy not only the gums but also the supporting bone that hold teeth. Teeth may eventually fall out or have to be extracted and replaced. Common tooth-replacement options include dental implants and bridges. Implants are inserted into the jawbone and hold dental restorations in place.
Gingivitis, the first stage of gum disease, is caused by plaque buildup around the gumline. The germs in plaque can harm the gums. Several other factors can contribute to gum disease. These include genetics, a diet low in nutrients, and smoking.
If gingivitis is not treated, it can lead to a more serious type of gum disease called periodontitis. Common signs of gingivitis include red, tender gums that bleed easily. In mild cases of gingivitis, it can be quite difficult for patients to know they have it because symptoms are mild. But the condition must be addressed as soon as possible.
Regular dental checkups are crucial for detecting and managing periodontal disease. A general dentist can detect gum disease and provide the appropriate treatment. The ideal treatment option depends on several factors. These include the severity of the disease and the patient’s preferences. Some general dentists can treat more advanced forms of periodontal disease.
But sometimes, a dentist may refer a patient to a periodontist. A periodontist is a dentist who focuses on treating periodontal disease. These dental professionals are also trained in cosmetic dental procedures. For mild cases of gum disease, a dentist may recommend deep cleaning or scaling and root planing. Deep cleaning usually helps to get rid of tartar beneath the gums and infected tissue.
More severe cases of gum disease might need surgery. It often involves replacing lost gum tissue or treatments that help to reduce the size of pockets between the gums and teeth. In the most severe cases, the provider may opt to remove very damaged or decayed teeth. They might then be replaced with dental implants.
Preventing gum disease
Depending on the severity of gum disease, treatment may be surgical or non-surgical. The prevention of gum disease is also an important aspect of periodontics. Dental providers can help people avoid gum disease. Depending on your situation, your dentist may recommend brushing more often or using a mouthwash.
It is ideal to brush twice a day. Flossing is also useful. It helps to remove plaque from places that your toothbrush may not be able to reach. Your dentist may also suggest oral healthcare products that will help to protect your teeth and gums. To learn more about periodontics, talk to your general dentist today.
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Periodontal health is critical when it comes to taking care of your dental needs. While many people think about teeth and avoiding cavities, maintaining healthy gums is also vital. If you are about to go to the dentist’s office and have a gum examination, it is helpful to know what to expect. Gum disease can…
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