Your gums are essentially the framework of your smile, keeping your teeth in place and keeping your smile whole. Which means that periodontal disease, if left untreated, could destroy this frame and lead to tooth loss, along with a host of uncomfortable symptoms. In today’s blog, your Dallas, TX, dentist looks at how our periodontal services could safeguard your smile, which includes a FREE consultation with our on-staff periodontist, Dr. Shalev!
Scheduling a FREE Consultation
Dr. Alon Shalev recently joined our team as a periodontist. A member of the American Academy of Periodontology, he has years of experience in periodontal care, cosmetic and implant dentistry, and even micro-surgery. He is passionate about delivering quality care to our patients, and wants to help them enjoy better gum health to keep smiles whole and healthy for years to come. As part of this commitment, he is offering our patients a free consultation to examine their smiles and find out if treatment is necessary to either prevent worsening health and disease, or to manage it and avoid complications like bleeding gums, discomfort, and even tooth loss. If you haven’t seen the dentist in a while due to the pandemic, anxiety, or other factors, then talk to our team. We want to help you feel comfortable and ready to take that next step to safeguard your oral health!
The Warning Signs and Causes of Periodontal Troubles
People with poor gum health could experience redness, soreness, or bleeding. If one or more of these symptoms applies to your smile, then please schedule a free consultation very soon. The problems start with initial inflammation, often referred to as gingivitis. Over time, as the inflammation grows more severe, the tissues could pull away from the teeth and expose deep pockets for harmful oral bacteria to enter. At this stage, inflammation becomes disease. While gingivitis can be reversed, the disease cannot be cured and instead, you need routine care to manage it and prevent complications like tooth loss.
How does poor gum health mean tooth loss? The later stages of periodontal disease, known as periodontitis, could actually destroy the tissues that connect your teeth and gums. As a result, the teeth become loose and could fall out completely. This is actually the number one cause of adult tooth loss! Even if you’ve lost teeth to the disease, you’re not beyond treatment. We could offer care to manage the disease so you’re ready for dental implant placement. You then enjoy new teeth that look and function like natural ones, and have the potential to last decades or even a lifetime. A new focus on your smile could also protect and preserve your remaining natural teeth too.
Scaling and Root Planings
To either reverse your initial inflammation, or to help manage the early stages of periodontal disease, we could recommend a deep cleaning known as a scaling and root planing. Essentially, this involves using an ultrasonic scaling device and a manual tool to break up the plaque and tartar on not just your teeth, but your roots too. For some, this could take one visit, but severe buildup could take two or even four visits. After we remove the buildup, we will polish the teeth for a brighter appearance. Following this treatment, we may manage the issue with a regular dental cleaning every three to four months.
In the more advanced stages of the disease, the tissues could begin to recede, which makes teeth appear long and could increase the risk of tooth loss. They restore these receded tissues, we could offer a grafting procedure. Taking portions of tissue from other parts of your smile, we cover the exposed roots and lower portions of the teeth. This helps reshape the gum line and offer a healthier and more esthetically-pleasing smile.
Pocket Reduction Surgery
We could also offer a unique procedure to limit the depths of the pockets, helping us better manage the disease with more preventive treatments going forward. To begin, we need to pull back the gums to reach and destroy harmful oral bacteria and to remove any buildup like plaque and tartar. We then perform a scaling and root planing. The tissues will be attached to the teeth and roots, now with reduced pocket depth.
At home, you can also take steps to help protect your smile. Remember, harmful oral bacteria can easily consume sugar and starch particles, as these tend to cling to the teeth. A healthier diet deprives them of these meals and limits plaque buildup. You can also help control plaque by brushing your teeth when you wake up and then again before bed, always using a fluoride toothpaste. To reach and remove all particles, you need to thoroughly floss every evening as well. Flossing is key, and you should run the tape up and down each side of every tooth, and dip below the gum line in a “c” motion when you do. These actions may not seem like much, but they can fight disease, tooth decay, bad breath, and even help limit teeth stains.
We’re still practicing COVID-19 precautions at our office, including using PPE and employing advanced technologies around the office to regularly clean and scrub the air and surfaces of harmful particles. We’re also limiting the time spent in the waiting room. We want to keep you safe when you see us, so you can enjoy a better smile without putting yourself or your family at risk. If you have any questions about how we improve your overall oral health, or if you would like to schedule a free exam with Dr. Shalev, then contact our team to learn more.
Your Dallas, TX, Dentist Wants to See You for a Periodontal Consultation
Good oral health means a strong and attractive smile, so make sure your smile is free of inflammation and periodontal health issues. For more information on how we safeguard the health of your gingival tissues, then please schedule a consultation by calling the Viva Dental Family Dentistry office nearest you at (214) 337-7800 (Dallas) or (972) 437-6000 (Richardson). Routine care may be the best way to avoid soreness and bleeding, and prevent tooth loss!