Have you noticed lately that your gums appear red and swollen? Maybe your gums bleed easily when you brush your teeth, or you have bad breath. Any of these signs point to an oral health issue called periodontal disease. Also known as gum disease, or periodontitis, this condition is fairly common. In fact, according to the CDC, nearly half of adults over the age of 30 in the United States, have some form of periodontal disease.
If you do have periodontal disease, you will want to schedule a visit with your dentist clinic. In most cases, your dentist will recommend one of the following treatment options for periodontal disease.
The dentist clinic you go to will recommend this type of treatment for periodontal disease in its earliest stages. Dental cleanings can help reverse periodontal disease so that your gums look pink and healthy instead of red and swollen.
To treat your particular case of periodontal disease, a dentist may recommend one of the following types of dental cleanings:
- Prophylaxis. A type of cleaning in which all the plaque and tartar are removed from the surface of the teeth.
- Scaling and root planing. A deep-cleaning of the teeth that removes plaque and tartar from the gum line.
- Gross debridement. A removal of plaque and tartar buildup that is embedded in and around the gums.
The type of periodontal treatment you receive depends upon the severity of periodontal disease and whether it's been a long time since you've visited the dentist clinic.
If you have reached the stage where a dental cleaning will not sufficiently treat your periodontal disease, you may need to undergo periodontal surgery. This type of surgery is performed at the dentist clinic.
Some of the most common types of periodontal surgery include:
- Flap surgery
- Bone grafts
- Soft tissue grafts
- Guided tissue regeneration
All of these types of periodontal surgery require a local anesthetic. If you are really nervous about the surgery, most dentist clinics will be able to give you medication to help you relax.
Periodontal disease is a type of gum infection, which is why some dentists prescribe certain medications. Antimicrobial medications get rid of bacteria in the mouth, which reduces inflammation of the gums. These medications come in the form of a mouth rinse.
A dentist may also prescribe an antimicrobial medication that gets placed in the pockets of the gums following a dental cleaning. If necessary, the dentist may also prescribe an antibiotic to get rid of bacteria in the mouth and gums.