So your general dentist suspects you have gum disease and refers you to a periodontist for treatment. You may be wondering what to expect and if your periodontal disease can be cured.
At Periodontal Health Center, our periodontists are dedicated to just that – stopping or reversing your gum disease. And yes, this is often possible without surgery. In fact, our Tampa Bay perio experts use a variety of non-surgical procedures to stop the spread of gum disease-causing bacteria and help restore our patients gum health.
Let’s chat about all the ways our periodontists can treat your gum disease without a scalpel!
Brush away gum disease!
First things first, the foundation to treating your periodontal disease is a strong oral hygiene routine. Brushing twice a day with a soft-bristle toothbrush, the right amount of fluoride toothpaste, and flossing and using mouthwash once a day will do wonders in removing the bacteria that causes gum disease to spread.
In fact, flossing between your teeth is absolutely vital for maintaining healthy gums – which means a happy, healthy mouth as well!
How does brushing and flossing help stop periodontal disease? Throughout the day, bacteria and food particles lodge themselves between your teeth. With each meal and beverage you consume, bacteria continue to build up between your teeth and gums. If you don’t intervene twice daily with a brush and some floss, that bacteria will turn into plaque and eventually harden into tartar, the precursor of periodontal disease.
Tartar is a stubborn substance and impossible to remove at home. This is why you must receive regular dental cleanings from your general dentist too! At your dental cleanings, a hygienist will remove plaque and tartar buildup from your teeth and gum line.
With this regular upkeep, if your periodontal disease is in the first stage (also known as gingivitis) there’s a good chance you’ll be able to cure your periodontal disease! Just be sure to receive regular gum health exams or perio cleanings as needed under the care of a periodontal specialist.
So let’s talk about the non-surgical techniques that periodontists can use to treat periodontal disease.
#1 – Scaling and root planing (deep teeth cleaning)
Scaling and root planing can sound a bit unnerving at first! But it’s really just a deep teeth cleaning where every affected tooth is cleaned, top to bottom.
Before beginning, our leading periodontists will talk to you about sedation options. We want you to feel at ease and comfortable during every procedure. Because patient comfort is one of our top priorities, we offer nitrous oxide (laughing gas) or IV conscious sedation to help our patients experience a pain-free procedure.
During your scaling and root planing treatment, our leading periodontists will carefully clean the crowns of your teeth as well as the root surfaces under the gums. Using special dental tools, we’ll remove bacteria, toxins, and tartar (calcified deposits) that build in the pockets between your teeth and gums. (These pockets form as bacteria continues to build up below the gumline, causing the gums to recede from the teeth. This buildup creates spacious pockets for bacteria to continue building.)
Once we’re done removing bacteria and build-up, we’ll then smooth the rough surface of the tooth root, which encourages your gums to reattach to your teeth.
#2 – Laser periodontal therapy
For more advanced cases of periodontal disease, our Tampa Bay periodontal experts offer Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure or LANAP for short.
As gum disease progresses to its later stages, damage can be irreversible by use of natural techniques or sudden improvements in oral care alone. The infected periodontal tissue must be removed to begin healing the gums. That’s where LANAP comes in!
Using an advanced dental laser, your periodontist will target the infected areas of your gum and remove them. (The concentrated beam from the dental laser actually blasts away infectious bacteria with accuracy and precision, without damaging healthy teeth and gums!)
Once this is done, we essentially complete a scaling and root planing procedure, cleaning the crowns and roots of your teeth to remove bacteria and tartar buildup with another specialized dental tool.
When laser periodontal therapy is used alongside a scaling and root planing procedure, your gum health and overall oral health drastically improves!
Explore your periodontal treatment options with PHC!
If you have periodontal disease, it’s important that you begin treatment with a qualified periodontist as soon as possible. Our perio experts are dedicated to salvaging as much gum tissue and bone as possible throughout your treatment. And depending on your unique case, we have highly effective, non-surgical treatment options available to you!
PHC has been providing advanced periodontal care in the Tampa Bay area since 1977. If you have symptoms of periodontal disease or your general dentist referred you to us, you can rest assured your gums are in expert hands! At your first visit, one of our experienced periodontists (Dr. Stilley, Dr. Medina, or Dr. Mashkouri) will examine the condition and health of your gums and discuss your treatment options to help you make the best decision for your health.
Request an appointment today!