Do You Need Periodontal Treatment? Four Things to Consider
When you visit a periodontist for periodontal treatment, you’re really in good hands. Periodontists have undergone an extra three years or more of specialized training in order to be able to successfully provide both non-surgical and periodontal plastic surgery procedures.
Since periodontists also handle dental implants, you may have seen a periodontist for a consultation recently—even if you don’t struggle with periodontal or gum disease.
Periodontology proper, though, is the practice within dentistry that looks at the supporting structures of the teeth, including bone and tissue. In this practice, the phases of gum disease from mild gingivitis to advanced periodontitis—a condition characterized by inflammation around the tooth and possible tooth loss—are all studied, diagnosed, and treated by trained periodontists.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that half of American adults aged 30 and older suffer from some form of periodontal disease. This accounts for an incredible 64 million adults from coast to coast.
Are You a Candidate for Periodontal Treatment?
Because every patient is different and the stages of gum disease manifest differently, no two periodontal treatments are exactly alike.
There are two broad categories of periodontal treatment—non-surgical and surgical. Non-surgical treatments include procedures like scaling and root planing, aimed at removing the tartar, plaque, and calculus that can exacerbate gum disease.
Are Your Gums Receding?
The latter might provide you with a better smile if your teeth seem too short because of too much gum tissue or, alternatively, if you’ve experienced the effects of gum recession over the years.
Do You Have Excess Tartar Buildup?
Periodontal disease is on a continuum, with mild gingivitis on one end and severe periodontitis and bone loss on the other. The American Academy of Periodontology wisely recommends the least invasive form of therapy possible for your particular kind of gum disease.
If your gum disease is moderate—perhaps a case of mild gingivitis or extra plaque that’s causing problems for you—then scaling and root planing might be procedures worth pursuing in consultation with a local periodontal specialist. Scaling and root planing are some of the most popular periodontal procedures around today.
Systematic antibiotics and antimicrobial substances may be adjuncts to scaling and root planing. Both are considered safe when performed by a qualified periodontist.
Do You Have a Stellar Bite?
A poor bite can wear down your teeth, cause some teeth to become loose, and even contribute to gum disease by creating nooks where bacteria can thrive. Ask your periodontist about tooth reshaping or a bite splint—both can improve smiles. And if you’re missing multiple teeth, you might consider the following.
Are You Missing Many Teeth?
The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research found that the average adult loses about four teeth between their twenties and their fifties. Teeth can be lost for a variety of reasons, including trauma, tooth decay, and advanced gum disease.
What many adults don’t know is that periodontists can provide permanent dental implants supported by extremely powerful titanium so that you can improve your appearance and your bite at the same time. As long as your bone and jaw are healthy enough to support dental implants, and you meet a few other checkmarks, you may be a candidate for dental implants. Visit the Central Florida Periodontics website to learn more!