Gum disease is a fairly prevalent condition that has the potential of being quite destructive when left untreated. Despite its common nature, gum disease is one of the leading causes of tooth loss in the United States. As the name implies, gum disease is characterized by an array of symptoms affecting the gums and supporting tissues surrounding the teeth; symptoms may include bleeding, swelling, or receding gums and persistent bad breath. In some cases, gum disease may result in tooth loss.
With the help of our team at Reflections Dental Care in Oklahoma City, OK, you can fight gum disease and keep your oral health in check. This includes the utilization of educational resources, preventative measures, and treatments.
We encourage you to call our office if you experience bleeding when you floss or your gums are feeling sore and inflamed while brushing. Healthy gums should not be affected by regular cleaning and are typically a healthy pink color.
During your visit, we will evaluate the health of your teeth and gums to determine if we need to perform any treatment. We will also provide feedback and information necessary to ensure that your smile remains healthy.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
There are three stages of gum disease, and as each stage advances, symptoms become more severe, and bone and tissue damage increases.
- Gingivitis is the first stage of the condition, which causes swollen gums that bleed when brushed or flossed. In the early stages of the disease, patients can avoid developing irreversible conditions that occur within the following stages. If you are suffering from gingivitis, you will likely be recommended a professional standard cleaning and some education regarding the proper brushing and flossing technique.
- Periodontitis is the next phase of gum disease. At this stage, you are likely to notice gum recession, tooth sensitivity, and persistent bad breath.
- Advanced periodontitis results in the loss of teeth and bone in the jaw. You may notice loose teeth, pockets of pus forming in tooth sockets, and constant pain in your gums and teeth. In the absence of treatment, the disease may spread to other parts of your body.
Scaling and Root Planing Treatment
Scaling and root planing is a form of treatment we use to manage periodontitis and keep the condition from worsening. Similar to a standard cleaning procedure, this treatment is used to thoroughly clean the teeth and remove plaque and tartar; the only difference with the procedure is that our focus is shifted to the areas both above and below the gum line.
Gum disease thrives due to the accumulation of acidic plaque and tartar forming around the gum tissue; this causes the gums to become inflamed and pull away from the teeth. As this happens, pockets form between the teeth and gums; this creates the perfect space for plaque, tartar, and food debris to collect. When out of reach from your toothbrush, this bacteria begins damaging the bone structure and eroding the supporting tissues.
Scaling and root planing involved the use of special tools to remove plaque and tartar below the gum line and smooth out the bone. This allows the gums to reattach to the cleaned surface of the teeth.
If we recognize that your gum disease is more advanced and can not be managed by scaling and root planing, we will refer you to a periodontal specialist. You deserve the best care that can be provided and we will ensure you are set up with a doctor that can help with your condition.
Our Care Team Is Here For You
Our team at Reflections Dental Care knows how tough it is to deal with gum disease, but we don’t want you to feel alone when you’ve got our team helping you. Whether you have been visiting us for many years or will be scheduling your first appointment with us, we are committed to you and your smile. You can count on us to provide you with the support, resources, and care you need to make sure that you can defeat gum disease and maintain a healthy smile. Call today to schedule your appointment!