If your gums are tender, red, swollen, or bleed easily, you may suffer from periodontal disease. Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is a degenerative condition that is caused by bacteria accumulating on the teeth. When not treated, periodontal disease can result in loss of the teeth, gum tissue, and bone. Here at Classic Smiles Dentistry in Austell, Georgia, our office provides periodontal maintenance to treat gum disease and prevent the serious effects of the condition using various methods:
- Pocket Reduction – known, as "flap" surgery is required when an infection has destroyed your gums and bone, which creates pockets where residues can buildup and bacteria, grow. When these pockets become too deep, at-home brushing and flossing will not be able to reach and clean these pockets, and the doctor will have to clean them and shorten them to keep residues and bacteria from entering and causing infections. In this procedure, the dentist will fold back the tissue once it is completely cleaned and rid of bacteria so it can reattach to your teeth and keep them securely in place. Once the bacteria and plaque have been removed, the gums will start to heal naturally.
- Scaling and Root Planing: This procedure thoroughly cleans your gums and the gum pockets to remove any food or buildup of tartar and plaque that could allow bacteria to grow and cause infections. Using a special tool, the dentist will scrap and scale any tartar or plaque from inside the pockets of your gums, and your teeth, until they are completely cleaned. Our doctor then accommodates you teeth's roots so they can re-attach to your cleaned gums. Depending on the severity of your case, one or more visits might be needed to complete the treatment.
- Root Surface Debridement: Root Surface Debridement (RSD) is the careful cleaning of the root surface of the tooth until all deposits have been removed. RSD requires a much longer appointment especially if there are a number of deep pockets. It is often necessary to organize a sequence of appointments so that all the pockets can be cleaned. This prevents re-infection from pockets that have yet to be treated. The aim of the treatment is reattachment of the gum to the tooth so that the pocket will be no more than 3mm. Debridement takes into account more than just the root surfaces. In addition to treatment of the root surface, it encompasses the pocket space, the pocket wall, underlying tissues, and even takes into account the immune response of the patient. The focus of debridement therapy is the control of a bacterial infection as opposed to simply removing deposits from root surfaces.
- Gum Surgery – this surgical procedure is needed to treat periodontal disease or a receding gum line. Having strong, healthy gums helps keep teeth in place and protect the roots of your teeth. It also prevents tooth and bone loss by keeping your teeth healthy and in place. In this procedure, tissue from your palate or from adjacent teeth is taken to cover an area where the gum has receded or has been lost. The procedure is fast and painless; local anesthesia and other sedative options are available to help you make you comfortable and block any pain during the treatment.
If you need our team to check your teeth for gum disease, please call us at Classic Smiles Dentistry (770) 884-7342 to schedule an appointment today and discuss your treatment options.