what is gum disease?

Gum disease affects the gums and bone that support your teeth. Some people get more severe gum disease than others. It begins with plaque; a soft, sticky substance that builds up on your teeth. Plaque is mostly made up of bacteria, which feed on sugar from food and drink. This soft plaque can harden on the teeth to form tartar (calculus) which gradually builds and is harder to remove. 

If plaque and calculus is allowed to build up, the bacteria in it can make your gums sore and infected; they will look red and puffy, and they will probably bleed on brushing. The gum will then start to become detached from the tooth, forming ‘pockets’ in which plaque can gather and bone supporting the tooth will slowly be lost. This process is usually painless; it can be become very bad without you noticing. If left unchecked, gum disease will result in the loss of teeth. This is one of the most common reasons that people lose their teeth. 

 

what will the treatment involve?

Treatment is based on controlling the bacteria. This treatment can take a traditional approach of multiple visits focusing on individual sites, or can take the form of a more complete approach called ‘full mouth disinfection’. This can be a benefit for moderate to advanced cases as a starting treatment and will drastically reduce the amounts of the causative bacteria in your mouth.

 

N.B The research based protocol for Full Mouth Disinfection dictates that the appointments for scaling and cleaning be on the same day. This is to prevent reinfection of the treated side of the mouth from the untreated side.

 

benefits of treatment

  • The gums will become healthier which will help you keep your teeth longer. The improvements will depend on how good your cleaning becomes and how severe your disease was to start with.
  • If your gums bleed or are red and swollen then this will reduce.
  • If your gums are sore, treatment will help.
  • If your teeth feel loose, they may feel firmer after treatment.
  • Your breath may become fresher.

risk factors

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Poor cleaning
  • Genetics
  • Some systemic diseases

 

Periodontal treatment will dramatically improve the health of your gums. To try and keep them that way we need your help. It is critical that a strict hygiene regime is followed to prevent the condition of the gums from worsening.