Most people have some degree of gum disease and are completely unaware. Thankfully, skilled dentist Karen Randall, DMD, can help. She diagnoses and offers gum disease treatment for all levels of severity at Canyon Dental Group in Tucson, Arizona. For more information and prevention strategies for gum disease, call Canyon Dental Group or book an appointment online today.
Gum disease is a highly common but preventable condition affecting the soft tissues in your mouth. Advanced gum disease can lead to loss of teeth and bone in your jaw, so it’s important to treat the condition in its early stages and practice great dental hygiene to prevent it.
The primary cause of gum disease is bacterial buildup on the surface of your teeth. Bacteria accumulate into a sticky film called plaque that you can clean off with a thorough brushing.
If you don’t brush regularly enough or thoroughly enough, the plaque can harden into a firm buildup called tartar.
When plaque and tartar accumulate around your gums, the bacteria can infect your gums. Your gums become inflamed and irritated, leading to the wide range of symptoms characteristic of gum disease.
There are two different stages of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis is less severe and easier to treat than periodontitis.
The symptoms of gum disease start out mild and worsen with time. At first, you might not notice any symptoms because they’re so mild.
Dr. Randall can catch signs of gum disease before you show any symptoms at your regular exam and cleaning appointments. However, you should make an appointment for gum disease treatment if you notice:
When you come to Canyon Dental Group for a gum disease examination, Dr. Randall examines your gums for visible signs of gum disease.
She might also stick a probe between your teeth and gums to check for pockets between them. If you have advanced gum disease, she might take X-rays to view your jawbone and check for bone loss.
Dr. Randall chooses from a variety of gum disease treatments based on the severity of your gum disease. In the beginning stages, you might need a deep cleaning and nothing more.
For more advanced cases of gum disease, Dr. Randall might recommend one or more of these treatments:
Scaling and root planing
During a deep cleaning, Dr. Randall rids your teeth of hardened tartar with a process called scaling. She might use a sharp metal tool or a laser for faster treatment. If you have pockets between your gums and the roots of your teeth, she smooths the roots with root planing to help your gums reattach.
Periodontal infection therapy
During periodontal infection therapy, Dr. Randall recommends chemicals in the form of an antiseptic rinse to kill bacteria in your mouth and fight gum disease. You should use the rinse daily for the best results.
If you can see the roots of your teeth because of gum recession, Dr. Randall might recommend a gum graft. She might take tissue from the roof of your mouth or from a donor. Then, she uses it to cover the exposed roots of your teeth.
Dr. Randall might prescribe antibiotics to take alongside other gum disease treatments to eliminate the infection.
To find out if you have gum disease and explore your treatment options for it, call Canyon Dental Group or book an appointment online today.