The gum, or periodontal tissues, are an important part of your oral and overall health. Periodontal disease affects almost half of Americans over the age of 30, and if left untreated, unfortunately, leads to tooth loss. On top of that, periodontal disease has been linked to several systematic diseases. When you suffer from periodontal disease, your immune system is constantly fighting an infection. This weakens your immune system and increases your chances of developing diabetes, heart disease, pulmonary disease, and other systematic conditions. At Smiles of Tulsa, we provide periodontal treatment to protect your teeth and prevent further complications.
Gingivitis to Periodontitis
Many patients may suffer from periodontal disease and not realize it. The first stage, known as gingivitis, is often painless and silently progressive. Gingivitis is the result of bacterial plaque that forms on the surfaces above and below the gumline. Patients with gingivitis may notice red, swollen, and bleeding gums. Luckily, gingivitis is easily preventable and reversible with regular brushing, flossing, and professional cleanings.
When gingivitis is allowed to progress, it can develop into a much more serious condition known as periodontitis. During periodontitis, the toxic buildup of bacterial plaque begins to affect the supportive bones and ligaments that keep your teeth in place. Eventually, your teeth will become loose or fall out. Patients with advanced periodontitis may need to undergo surgical treatment.
Scaling and Root Planing
Routine cleaning is performed to prevent periodontal disease while scaling and root planing is performed to treat it. Also known as “deep cleaning,” scaling and root planing is the most common method of periodontal treatment.
Before the procedure, Corbyn VanBrunt, DDS or our dental hygienist will apply a local anesthetic to minimize your discomfort. Next, we will thoroughly scale all the plaque, bacterial toxins, and tartar deposits from the surfaces of your teeth and roots. Any rough areas of your roots will be smoothed out to keep bacteria, plaque, and tartar from re-establishing underneath the gums. The goal is to allow your gums to reattach tightly and securely to the teeth.
This may take more than one appointment to complete. At a follow-up appointment, Corbyn VanBrunt, DDS will make sure the gums have responded well to the treatment. You may experience some minor bleeding and swelling during the healing process. If the treatment was a success, you might not need any further procedures.
Other Surgical Treatment
If the gum tissue is not fitting properly around the tooth after a scaling and root planing, we may recommend a pocket reduction surgery. During the procedure, your gum tissue will be folded back to remove any remaining bacteria and smooth out damaged bones.
If you have gum recession due to periodontal disease, you may also qualify for a gum graft. A gum graft will cover the exposed roots to help reduce sensitivity and protect the roots from decay. It will also prevent future gum recession and bone loss. You may also need a bone graft to rebuild bone that has been destroyed by periodontal disease.
Schedule Your Appointment
If you need a routine or deep cleaning, schedule your appointment by calling (918) 891-3059.