Dr. Ray Becker offers a range of effective therapies to combat gum disease in Columbia, MD, and its effects. Periodontal treatment options range from scalings (deep cleanings) that remove plaque and calculus (tartar) from beneath the gum line, to surgical repair of lost gum and bone tissue.
Periodontal therapy is a general dentistry service that can take various forms. But the goal is always to restore diseased tissues to health. Periodontal disease can spread from the gums to the jawbone that supports the teeth, and may even cause tooth loss in the most severe cases.
Your Role in Periodontal Health
Dental plaque is the main cause of periodontal disease, so it’s essential to remove it every day with effective brushing and flossing. This doesn’t mean scrubbing, which can actually cause your gums to recede. Proper techniques can be demonstrated for you if you have any questions.
Of course, there are some areas of the mouth that a toothbrush and floss just can’t reach, which is why it’s so important to have regular professional cleanings at our Howard County dentist office. Your regular dental exam with our dentists near you in Columbia, MD is also a time when early signs of gum disease can be detected before they become a larger issue.
Eating a nutritious diet low in sugar, and staying away from tobacco in all forms, will also increase your periodontal health — and your chances of keeping your teeth for life.
Non-Surgical Periodontal Therapy
Scaling and Root Planing: Scaling involves removing plaque and hard deposits (calculus or tartar) from the surface of the teeth, both above and below the gum line. Root planing is the smoothing of the tooth-root surfaces, making them more difficult for bacteria to adhere to.
Antibiotics and Antimicrobials: Dr. Becker may recommend the short-term use of a prescription antimicrobial rinse (usually containing chlorhexidine), or even a topical antibiotic (such as tetracycline or doxycycline) applied directly to the affected areas.
Bite Adjustment: Dr. Becker may use restorative dental procedures to reshape tooth surfaces and repair damaged teeth in order to bring the bite into alignment.
Surgical Treatments for Gum Disease
Gum grafting: Dr. Becker may suggest this surgical procedure, which involves carefully placing a small amount of new tissue in an area where little or no gum tissue currently exists — typically recommended to prevent further gum recession or to cover root surfaces of your teeth that have become exposed.
Periodontal Plastic Surgery: When used to describe surgery, the word “plastic” refers to any reshaping procedure that creates a more pleasing appearance of the gum tissues.
Laser Treatment: Removing diseased gum tissue with lasers can offer significant advantages over conventional surgery, such as less discomfort and gum shrinkage.
Crown Lengthening Surgery: A surgical procedure in which tooth structure that is covered by gum and bone tissue may need to be exposed either for cosmetic reasons (to make the teeth look longer and the smile less gummy) or to aid in securing a new dental crown.
Periodontal Therapy FAQs
Will I feel pain during periodontal therapy?
No, you will not feel pain during both non-surgical and surgical periodontal treatments. Your mouth will be numbed so that you do not feel discomfort during treatment. After treatments, you might be uncomfortable for a couple of hours, but you should not be in pain.
Can periodontal therapy improve my tooth health?
Yes! Periodontal treatments not only remove harmful tartar, plaque, and bacteria but also promote healthy gum growth and stronger tooth enamel.
Will my periodontal therapy be covered by my dental insurance?
Some dental plans will cover the entire cost or part of the cost associated with restorative treatments. Periodontal treatments are seen as a necessity to fix functional issues. Please contact your dental insurance provider directly before assuming that it will be covered.
What does periodontal therapy include?
Root surfaces are thoroughly cleaned using scaling and root planing to get rid of bacteria, calculus, and plaque. Additionally, root surfaces must be smooth to stop repeated buildup and facilitate the reattachment of the gum tissues.
How effective is periodontal treatment?
If you follow the advice we give you during the maintenance stage, your chance of recurrence is low. Periodontal therapies and treatments are incredibly effective. Additionally, we recommend that you refrain from using any tobacco products and practice good oral hygiene post treatment.
Can you stop periodontitis from progressing?
By identifying signs early, receiving treatment, and maintaining good dental hygiene after therapy, you can stop periodontal disease from progressing and spreading.
How fast does periodontitis spread?
Periodontal disease develops gradually but steadily. Since plaque only takes four days to reach its full size, you’ll be able to see physical evidence of gingivitis by day five. If you haven’t tried to treat gingivitis, you may notice advanced stages of this disease in as little as a few weeks.
Information About Oral DNA Labs
At our office, we use clinical laboratory services from OralDNA Labs® to ensure we are giving our patients the best oral health information possible. OralDNA Labs® is a specialty diagnostics company designed to provide reliable, definitive and cost effective clinical tests that guide oral health professionals in detecting and prognosing disease at an earlier, more treatable stage.
Schedule a Dental Exam Today
If you have sore gums or bleeding gums, schedule an appointment for a periodontal disease screening and consultation. Dr. Becker offers gum disease treatment in Columbia, MD and Ellicott City, MD for all stages. We gladly welcome new patients.