So, your dentist has diagnosed you with periodontal disease and recommended special treatments. But what is periodontal disease exactly, and is it reversible? Our experienced dentist for TMJ treatment in Chicago offers answers to your questions here.
Periodontal disease is the infection of the gum and surrounding tissue caused by the buildup of plaque, a film on the teeth that harbors bacteria. The first stage is gingivitis, an inflammation of the gums that causes discomfort and bleeding. If gingivitis isn’t treated in time, the bacteria start to migrate below the gum line.
As the disease progresses, bacteria damage the support between the gum and teeth. Left untreated, the bacteria continue downward, destroying the gum, tooth root and bone. Periodontal disease is a major cause of tooth loss.
Thankfully, if the disease is in the early stages, it can be reversible! Gingivitis is the most treatable stage; returning to brushing and flossing twice a day and getting regular dental cleanings is generally effective in reversing this condition. If you notice that your gums are swollen or bleed when you brush, keep up with hygiene and schedule an appointment with your dentist.
Even the early stages past gingivitis are treatable. However, in very advanced cases, it’s possible that there is already permanent damage to the bones that support the teeth. This damage cannot be reversed, but it can be prevented by caring for your teeth and gums!
Your dentist or hygienist will perform periodontal scaling, which is a deep cleaning that removes plaque below the gum line. Root planing is then used to smooth the root, encouraging the gum to reattach to the tooth. You may also be given an antibacterial mouthwash after your deep cleanings.
It’s very important to stick with your hygiene routine while being treated. With good care, you should be able to get your early-stage periodontitis under control!
The information provided in this article is not meant to be medical advice and is for educational purposes only. If you would like to learn more about this and other topics related to dentistry, feel free to contact Dente Complete Dentistry, with a convenient dental office in Chicago, by calling 773.295.0562 or by clicking here.