Periodontal disease — better known as “gum disease” — is a condition that affects the soft tissues and bone supporting your teeth. It causes symptoms like bleeding, swelling, gum recession, and bad breath, although many people are unaware they have it. If you have gum disease or are showing signs, Dr. Medina may recommend scaling and root planing (a deep cleaning) to remove calcified buildup just below the gum lines. If bone loss is severe, we can also provide osseous surgery and bone grafting to counteract tooth mobility and loss. The only way to know for certain whether you have gum disease is to have a periodontal screening performed during your next visit.
While gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults, it also impacts the entire body. As inflammation suppresses the immune system and bacteria travel from the mouth elsewhere via the bloodstream, medical complications can arise.
If you have any stage of gum disease we have a treatment option available to you. For mild cases, scaling and root planing may be effective, and for moderate to severe cases osseous surgery has been shown to remove harmful bacteria deep below the gum line. After being treated for gum disease, a periodontal maintenance regimen is important to prevent relapse of the infection. Alternating problem-focused cleanings with preventative care techniques, we can help you to avoid additional bone and soft tissue loss, thereby preventing progression of the disease. Depending on the severity of your situation, you may need to schedule a periodontal maintenance appointment as frequently as every 3-4 months.