At Glenfield Dental, we place huge emphasis on our patients’ oral health and offer excellent periodontal treatment to those suffering from gum disease.
What is periodontal disease?
Gingivitis is the initial stage of periodontal disease and the easiest to treat. The direct cause of gingivitis is the plaque that forms constantly on the teeth and gums.
Periodontitis is advanced gum disease. It begins as gingivitis and, if not treated, will eventually begin to damage the jaw bone and the ligament around the teeth. If this process continues, the teeth become loose and pockets form between the teeth and gums. These pockets are places where more bacteria grow. If periodontitis is not treated, your teeth can become loose and even fall out. Periodontitis is not usually painful but the effects are not fully reversible.
Who is at a higher risk of periodontal disease?
Certain groups of people tend to have a higher chance of developing gum disease and therefore need to take extra care of their gums. These groups are:
- Smokers: People who smoke are more prone to gum disease because the use of tobacco causes a lack of oxygen in the bloodstream, reducing the flow of blood and nutrients to the gum tissue. This weakens the body’s defence mechanisms and makes the gums more susceptible to infection.
- Diabetics: People with diabetes: When an individual suffers from diabetes, the blood vessel structure is altered. This can cause a reduction in the efficiency of blood flow, which then might weaken the bone and gums and leave them more susceptible to infections.
- People suffering from stress: Stress makes it difficult for our bodies to fight gum disease and can also cause people to engage in habits known to lead to gum disease such as forgetting to clean teeth properly and smoking
- Older age groups: surveys indicate that older people have the highest rates of periodontal disease. As we age, our immune systems become less efficient and decreased immunity is a risk factor for gum disease..
- Partial denture wearers: Denture wearers must ensure they clean their remaining natural teeth and the denture thoroughly. When the surface material of a denture combines with the warmth of the mouth, it becomes an ideal environment for the growth of plaque bacteria. According to research, removable partial dentures can cause an increase in the accumulation of plaque on the remaining teeth and this can lead to gum disease.
How is periodontal disease treated?
At every examination visit patients are screened for gum disease. This includes the recording the measurements of gum pocket depth. Through these thorough examinations
Treatment is provided depending upon the severity of the gum disease. Additional cleaning measures such as effective interdental cleaning helps treat all levels of gum disease.
Monitoring of disease progression is undertaken before and after treatment.
Referral (where appropriate)
Where there is little or no response to initial treatment a specialist referral may be advised.
Are there any special agents that can help?
We avoid the use of antibiotics unless patients suffer from specific conditions and therefore are more likely to benefit from them. There are very few indications for using antibiotics for cases of periodontal disease, but there are limited circumstances where using them is appropriate and will help to manage periodontal disease.
Using treatments containing chlorhexidine digluconate can fight plaque and help to keep periodontal disease at bay. Such treatments include gels, sprays and mouthwashes.
Please note that these products are only beneficial if used in conjunction with improved cleaning measures and regular dental hygiene visits.
What is the role of the dental hygienist?
Our excellent dental hygienists play a vital role in the success of your periodontal treatment. They will help to reduce symptoms of periodontal disease such as halitosis, bleeding gums when brushing and tooth mobility. They will help you get back on track with a good oral hygiene routine to make sure your gums maintain optimum health.
In addition to improving specific oral hygiene methods our hygienists may need to carry out deep scaling underneath the gum line. This can be done with or without local anaesthesia dependant upon depth of gum pockets. From a preventative point of view this may have to be done on a regular basis to help treat advanced cases.
If you think you may be experiencing symptoms of periodontal disease contact our dental team today on 0116 2879608.