Periodontal Disease – Waco, TX
Periodontal Therapy Can Revitalize Your Gum Health
Periodontal disease (also known as gum disease) is one of the most common oral health problems in the world. In fact, over half of the population here in the United States is suspected to suffer from a mild to an advanced form of it! While this infection can seem rather harmless in the beginning, untreated cases can quickly spread and threaten your healthy teeth. Thankfully, our team has the skills and advanced techniques needed to stop it in its tracks here at Premier Family Dental. If you’re experiencing suspicious oral bleeding or overly swollen gum tissue, don’t hesitate to contact our Central Texas practice.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease attacks the soft oral tissue that surrounds your teeth, causing redness, inflammation, and even bleeding to occur to your gums when brushing and/or flossing. In its early stages, which is considered gingivitis, our team can work to reverse it with regular dental cleanings and a commitment from you to practice good oral habits at home. However, if it is left to progress, the infection can spread beneath the gum line and create gum pockets that trap harmful bacteria and food particles. As a result, inflammation and infection can enter the bloodstream, making you more vulnerable to health-related conditions (i.e. heart attack, stroke, diabetes, neurological disorders, respiratory disease) as well as bone and tooth loss.
Signs/Symptoms of Gum Disease
- Redness of the gums
- Inflamed and bleeding gums
- Oral sores that do not heal
- Bad breath
- Gum pockets
- Difficulty chewing
- Tooth sensitivity
- Receding gums that make teeth appear longer
Treatment Options for Gum Disease
No matter what stage your periodontal disease may be in, Dr. Cofer and his team can provide beneficial treatment solutions to help you take back your gum health and move forward with a healthier smile. Some of the possible treatments offered include:
Scaling and Root Planing
When faced with relatively early cases of gum disease, our team can typically reverse the symptoms by providing more frequent cleanings and helping the patient improve their oral hygiene routine at home. However, this approach may not work for patients who have already experienced moderate damage. As a next resort, scaling and root planing can help eliminate infection and improve the health of your oral tissue.
This procedure has two distinct sections to it. First, Dr. Cofer will target the areas along and underneath the gum tissue (the “scaling” portion), removing harmful bacteria as he goes. Then, it will be time to target the tooth roots, which can gain rough surfaces over time and attract plaque accumulation. By smoothing these areas (the “root planing” section), we can minimize your risk for further flare-ups.
Antibiotic therapy is another form of periodontal treatment that is usually used in conjunction with professional hygiene and scaling and root planing. Following these services, our team will apply the medication to the gum tissue so that it can work on eliminating any left-over bacteria that may have been initially missed. Our goal is to maximize your success and leave your oral health in the best place possible!
How to Maintain Gum Health
If you want to avoid gum disease altogether or prevent it from coming back, there are things you can do, such as:
- Maintain a good oral hygiene routine (brush twice a day for two minutes, floss at least once a day, and rinse with an antimicrobial mouthwash).
- Limit how much sugar and starch you are consuming, as both can produce harmful bacterial growth.
- Stop smoking, as this makes you more susceptible to gum disease.
- Keep your regularly scheduled six-month dental checkups and cleanings. If you are a periodontal patient, it may mean more frequent visits to our office to ensure the bacteria and infection are not returning.