Periodontal Therapy in Massapequa
Sometimes siding with the majority is best, but there are other times when you’re better off being in the minority. According to research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 75 percent of American adults have some degree of gum, or periodontal, disease; that is not a majority you want to be counted among. At South Shore Dental Care, we offer both thorough dental cleanings to help patients avoid gum disease entirely, as well as periodontal therapy for patients who have this bacterial infection and need to keep the disease and its consequences in check.
What is Gum Disease?
As mentioned above, gum disease is actually a bacterial infection. Millions of bacteria live and thrive in your mouth. When you drink plenty of water, eat a healthy diet and brush and floss your teeth daily, these bacteria are kept under control. However, if the balance becomes unsettled, then these bacteria can multiply and begin to cause trouble.
Specifically, bacteria hide in plaque, which is that colorless film that we all have in our mouths. With proper oral hygiene, plaque is removed. However, if allowed to remain on and between your teeth, plaque begins to harden and becomes tartar. Tartar cannot be removed with just a toothbrush and toothpaste, and it begins to accumulate along and even below the gum line. Here, it can cause inflammation of gum tissue and deteriorate the bone structure underneath the gums that hold your teeth in place. Ultimately, untreated periodontal disease can lead to tooth loss. In fact, advanced periodontitis is the leading cause of tooth extraction in the United States.
The key signs of gum disease include:
- Chronic bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth
- Gums that are swollen, tender and red
- Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
- Gum recession
- Teeth that are sensitive, especially to hot and cold foods and drinks
- Drifting or loose teeth
- A difference in the way your teeth meet when you bite down
- Dentures that don’t seem to fit as well as they used to
Gum Disease and the Rest of Your Body
In addition to the consequences to your smile, gingivitis and periodontitis have been linked to several systemic illnesses and diseases. The same inflammation that is associated with gum disease has also been connected to:
- Cardiovascular disease
- High blood pressure
Gum Disease Therapy in Massapequa
Although gum disease is not curable, it is controllable with proper treatment. At South Shore Dental Care, Drs. Stutman and their staff provide scaling and root planing. Scaling completely removes the plaque and tartar that led to your gum disease in the first place. Then, planing smoothes the root surfaces of your teeth, so both plaque and tartar are less likely to reattach.
If you are seeing any of the signs of gum disease mentioned above, then don’t wait for your symptoms to worsen. Contact our office to schedule your appointment today!