Periodontics

Periodontics Specialist
At Atlanta Dentistry by Design patients throughout the Atlanta, Georgia area can get the help they need when dealing with periodontal, or gum, disease. Here, you can get the treatments you need like root planing and scaling.

Periodontics

by Paul Freeman, DDS

What is a periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection of the gums and tissues which surround the teeth. It is frequently the result of the buildup of plaque and tartar along the gum line. This buildup occurs when the teeth are not routinely brushed and flossed. Medical issues such as diabetes and even consuming too many sugary foods or drinks can also contribute to the condition. There are two major types of periodontal disease: gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis affects only the gums and is the preliminary stage of the disease. It is a mild form of periodontal disease, and when cared for properly it can be reversed. When the disease progresses, it reaches stage two- periodontitis. During this more destructive stage, bacteria reach deep into the pockets of tissue where bone and membrane support the teeth. Periodontitis can lead to tooth loss and serious health problems.

What are the symptoms of the disease?

Periodontal disease is known as a “silent” disease because obvious symptoms, particularly pain, don’t frequently present themselves. Some symptoms can include:

  • Loose or separating teeth
  • A change in the way the teeth fit together when biting
  • Bridges, fillings, or partial dentures which no longer fit properly
  • Continuing redness, puffiness, tenderness, or swelling of the gums
  • Bleeding gums when brushing teeth, flossing, or biting into hard food
  • Gums which are pulling away from the teeth
  • Persistent bad breath or metal taste in the mouth
  • Pus between the gums and teeth
  • A sore or irritation in the mouth which doesn’t get better after two weeks

What are the treatments for periodontal disease?

Several different things will be taken into account when treating periodontal disease. A great deal will depend on the stage of disease and the amount of deterioration affecting the gums, supporting tissues, teeth, and bone. Treatments can include:

  • Scaling and root planing: During this procedure the tooth roots are smoothed to expose and remove harmful bacteria. Root smoothing along with the practice of good oral hygiene can help to prevent plaque from building up once again.
  • Periodontal surgery: This is used to eliminate bone infections or to augment lost bone. The most common surgical treatments include pocket reduction and bone regeneration.

For more information about these procedures and your other options, contact the office to schedule a consultation with the doctor.

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