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What Is Periodontal Disease? How Is It Treated?

April 19, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — drbushdid @ 8:11 am

Bliss is... being with youPeriodontal disease is an infection of the gums characterized by bleeding, red, swollen, or tender gums, among other unpleasant symptoms. Left untreated, it can wreak havoc on oral and overall health. Are you one of the millions of Americans dealing with this condition? If so, it’s time to seek treatment. At Bushdid Smiles, we first treat infected gums nonsurgically, then focus on preventing re-infection by emphasizing improved hygiene at home.

Why Periodontal Disease Occurs

Periodontal disease occurs most often due to a lack of sufficient dental hygiene. The best thing you can do to defend against infected gums is to brush and floss your teeth as recommended and maintain a nutritious, balanced, low-sugar diet.

Additionally, people who smoke or use tobacco are at a much higher risk of developing periodontal disease. Tobacco reduces the amount of saliva in your mouth, creating a perfect breeding ground for infection-causing bacteria. What’s more, it also makes it harder for your mouth to heal — so once infection does develop, the chances that your body will mend itself are greatly reduced.

Certain medications causing dry mouth also increase the risk of developing gum disease, as well as age. The chances a person will develop the condition are raised over age 35, then greatly increase over age 65.

Startling Side Effects of Gum Disease

Don’t delay treatment if you suspect that you are dealing with periodontal disease. The condition is unlikely to heal on its own, and it can take a toll on your overall health.

Periodontal disease has been linked to a number of conditions, including:

  • Heart disease
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • Memory loss
  • Certain types of cancer
  • Low birthweight
  • Premature birth

Fortunately, treating and preventing gum disease can also reduce the severity or risk of these health conditions.

Treatment for Periodontal Disease

The beginning stages of gum disease are reversed with improved hygiene at home and a couple extra visits to the dentist’s office. We encourage patients stay on top of their routine visits so we can catch the warning signs of gum disease early for most effective treatment.

For moderate stages of periodontal disease, we usually recommend periodontal therapies, which are nonsurgical treatment using ultrasonic scaling to remove bacteria above and below the gum line and to simultaneously prevent reinfection. Nonsurgical treatment for periodontal disease may be completed over several visits to the dentist. Antibiotic therapy (local or oral) may be combined with ultrasonic scaling for full healing.

Once all the infection has healed, we will recommend a Sonicare tool for you to use at home, and instructions on proper cleaning. With improved hygiene and routine visits to the dentist, you can enjoy healthy gums for years to come.

Schedule an Appointment Today!

Come see the team at Bushdid Smiles and you can greatly reduce the chances that you will develop periodontal disease. When was your last appointment in our Coral Gables office? If it’s been longer than six months, it’s time to come in for a checkup and cleaning. Request an appointment online today!

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