Gum disease is a chronic infection from harmful bacteria in plague that affects the tissues and bones that support your teeth. A slight pocket is created where the gum line meets the tooth, typically less than 3 millimeters in healthy teeth. In periodontal disease, the pocket is enlarged, allowing bacteria to grow and thrive in spaces where brushing can normally miss. If it is left untreated, bacteria will continue to grow and lead to bone and tooth loss.
What can be done to repair Periodontal Disease?
There are many types of periodontal diseases, from the mildest form being gingivitis, to the more severe periodontitis. Inflammation, root exposure, and progressive loss of tissue and bone attachment are common symptom. In earlier stages of periodontal disease such as gingivitis, professional treatment and good oral care can reverse the symptoms. However, for serious cases where bone loss has begun, it is very difficult to put the bone back.
The whole purpose of periodontal treatment is to remove the hard deposits containing the bacteria that cling to the teeth in those hard to reach places by normal oral care. Special cleaning called scaling and root planning can be done to aid in gum healing and shrink the pocket, making it harder for bacteria to accumulate. In some cases, surgery has to be done to reduce the pocket depth and repair the area. Bone grafts can be done to rebuild the surrounding area and stabilize the tooth and pocket.
Along with daily home oral care, regular visits to your dentist and periodontist will help in fighting and preventing periodontal disease. Thankfully we have a Periodontist, Dr. Jimmy Choi, to help you with any gum-related needs.