Treatment of the Gums and Bone - Gum Disease
A healthy smile starts with a good foundation.
(Scaling and Root Planing)
At your initial exam and at every recall appointment we are evaluating your mouth for periodontal disease. We do this with a combination of radiographs (X-rays), clinical examination, and taking measurements around all of your teeth. We measure 6 different spots around each tooth to monitor for bone loss. Bone loss occurs from calculus (tartar) build-up sitting on your teeth below your gum line. Daily brushing and flossing helps to prevent calculus build-up, therefore preventing periodontal disease. If we determine that you are suffering from periodontal disease we will recommend a deep cleaning (scaling and root planning). The goal of scaling and root planning is to remove the build-up that is adhered to your teeth under the gum line. We use a combination of ultrasonic instrumentation, hand instrumentation, and irrigation to remove this build-up and stop the bone loss from progressing further. Signs of periodontal disease include bleeding when brushing or flossing, mobility of teeth, and gum recession.
After your initial deep cleaning we will evaluate the effectiveness of periodontal treatment and get you started on a periodontal maintenance program. Periodontal maintenance is completed every 3-4 months. At these periodontal maintenance appointments, we will take measurements around all of your teeth and chart any areas of recession and/or bleeding. Our hygienist will then clean any build-up off of your teeth that has accumulated since your last appointment. We will then polish and floss all of your teeth. One of our doctors will then do an exam if you are due for an exam at that time or if you are having any additional concerns. The goal of periodontal maintenance is to “maintain” your bone levels where they are and ensure periodontal health. Periodontal disease makes it much more difficult to keep your teeth clean which is why consistent periodontal maintenance programs are crucial to maintaining your teeth over a lifetime.