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Slow, but progressive, periodontal disease swells the gingiva and destroys the bone that supports your teeth. Once the bone is lost, it does not regenerate. It may be generalized affecting all of your teeth or localized, affecting one tooth. This disease affects both men and women of all ethnicities from teen years through adulthood. In its early stages, you be unaware of its presence. Dental hygiene habits, medications, smoking, alcohol, diet, general health or heredity may play a role in its progression. Initial symptoms of the disease may include swollen gums that bleed when you brush and an odor to your breath. Symptoms can advance to loosening and shifting of teeth and their eventual loss.
From a deep dental cleaning to surgery, there are several options for treating periodontal disease. The treatment plan depends largely on the severity of the gum disease. The goal of periodontal disease treatment is to get rid of disease-causing bacteria and stop the progress of the disease. The American Academy of Periodontists stresses that treatment should start early, with the most cost-effective and noninvasive options.
There are two stages of the disease. Gingivitis is milder and only affects the gums. The disease is often reversible at this stage when treated early. Periodontitis is the second stage and more serious form of gum disease. Gums may separate from the teeth, forming pockets between the teeth and gums. These pockets become infected as well as the gums, damaging tissue and bones that support the teeth. If left untreated, tooth loss can occur.
Treatment options include deep cleaning (or scaling and root planing). The first step is usually a thorough cleaning of the spaces between the affected teeth and gums. This is called scaling and root planing. Scaling involves removing tartar from above and below the gum line. Root planing removes rough spots and bacteria from the teeth.
If you have any questions about preventing Periodontal Disease, please speak to one of our Dental Express team members today.