INCLINE FAMILY DENTISTRY
According to the American Dental Association, periodontal disease affects 42 percent of Americans. Of those individuals, nearly eight percent will suffer tooth loss as a result. While many people think losing teeth is part of the aging process, that isn’t the case. Modern dentistry, like that practiced in our Lakewood, Colorado office by Dr. Travis Barr, makes it possible for you to keep your natural teeth for life. One way to make sure that happens is to fight periodontitis by undergoing periodontal therapy treatments as needed.
What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease, also referred to as gum disease, involves the gums and supporting bones and tissues around the teeth. The most prevalent types of periodontal disease are gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis is inflammation around the gums and necks of the teeth caused by infection, bacteria, dental plaque buildup, or trauma.
Periodontitis is the condition that exists when bones and supporting tissues around the teeth are affected and spaces, or pockets, may form around the teeth.
Factors that Contribute to Periodontal Disease
Anyone can suffer from periodontal disease; however, some individuals are more prone to it. For example:
- Individuals with poor oral hygiene
- Those with a compromised immune system
- People with very poor nutrition
Some studies even consider stress as a risk factor for developing periodontal disease. In that case, just about everyone is at risk. That’s why periodontal therapy treatments are a good idea for maintaining oral health.
Types of Periodontal Therapy
In addition to regular oral hygiene that includes brushing and flossing, various therapies are available to prevent and reverse periodontal disease.
- Scaling and root planing – This treatment is essentially a deep cleaning that involves the scaling devices or ultrasonic instruments to remove plaque and hardened tartar from above and below the gum line.
- Gum grafting – When periodontal disease causes gum tissue to recede, gum tissue can be removed from other areas of your mouth and placed around teeth that need it. If adequate healthy gum tissue is not available, donor tissue can be used.
In some cases, more invasive procedures are required. Those treatments include:
- Crown lengthening – In some cases, it is necessary to remove small areas of gum around the teeth due to gum disease. For example, when gums appear thick and cover a tooth, crown lengthening can make the tooth look longer and improve overall symmetry.
- Periodontal plastic surgery – In this procedure, deformed gum tissue is reshaped to improve its overall appearance.
- Periodontal laser treatments – To minimize discomfort, periodontal laser treatments are often used to removed diseased gum tissue, plaque, and other bacteria that can lead to tooth loss.
Periodontal therapy can improve the appearance and function of your teeth and gums as well as prevent tooth loss. To learn more about periodontal therapy or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Barr, contact us today at Incline Family Dentistry. We look forward to hearing from you!