About Gum Disease Treatment
Periodontal gum disease is a progressive condition caused by bacteria that reside within oral plaque. This substance can harden over time, resulting in further irritation to the gum tissues in the form of tartar. Unless proper care is received, the accumulation of bacteria, plaque, and tartar can facilitate the gum disease process, which gradually destroys the gums, fibers, and bone tissues that support your teeth. At Advanced Dentistry of Centre County, our skilled general dentists and team of professionals offer nonsurgical and surgical treatments to treat the gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis stages of gum disease. If you have bleeding, inflamed, or tender gums, receding gums, bad breath, or other symptoms of gum disease, contact our State College, PA facility today to learn about your options for care. We are pleased to offer scaling and root planing (SRP), flap (osseous) surgery, and other solutions for returning the health and wellness to your smile.
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Best Candidates for Treatment
Ideal candidates for periodontal treatments range from patients who have swollen and bleeding gums to those with severe loss of bone or soft tissues in the mouth. When gum disease is treated in the earliest stage, known as gingivitis, the symptoms can often resolve without resulting in damage to the underlying bone and periodontal fibers. In some cases, gum disease has already resulted in tooth loss, as in the case of advanced periodontitis. No matter how your periodontal disease has advanced, however, the time to seek treatment is now. Oral conditions that typically indicate the presence of periodontal disease include bad breath that cannot be masked, tender, bleeding, and receding gums, loose teeth, tooth sensitivity, and noticeable pus surrounding a tooth or teeth. If you are currently suffering from any of these symptoms, we encourage you to make an appointment at Advanced Dentistry of Centre County for a gum disease screening. Gum disease has also been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and a growing list of other systemic health concerns so the importance of identifying and treating periodontal infections goes beyond the health of your smile.
The Gum Disease Treatment Process
The fundamental goal of gum disease treatment is to stop the disease in its tracks and prevent further harm to your health. To identify gum disease and determine its severity, our staff will measure the depths of the spaces separating your teeth and gums (periodontal pockets). Digital x-rays will also be taken so that our dentists can evaluate bone loss around your teeth. The results of this examination will help determine the type of gum disease treatment recommended:
- Gingivitis: Cases that are caught early in the gingivitis stage are generally resolved with a thorough cleaning and improved oral hygiene efforts at home.
- Periodontitis: This stage is often treated with nonsurgical scaling and root planing (SRP) to remove plaque and tartar accumulation from below the gumline. We may also place locally delivered antibiotics down into periodontal pockets to minimize bacterial growth.
- Advanced periodontitis: In more advanced cases of periodontitis, our dentists may recommend a surgical procedure, such as flap (osseous) surgery, to access areas of infection located deep below the gumline.
- Periodontal maintenance: Once your treatment is complete, we may recommend a periodontal maintenance program, which includes meticulous cleanings and monitoring of gum health every 3 – 4 months. These visits include dental exams, x-rays, and fluoride as needed and take the place of biannual prophylaxis (cleaning) visits.
Recovery Following Care
Depending on your needs, gum disease treatment may be performed over the course of one or several office visits. Our team will review how you can further benefit from care by altering, improving, or quitting certain habits, like smoking (which may intensify the effects of periodontal disease). Because periodontal treatments are customized according to the severity of the disease (and the needs of the patient), healing timeframes and instructions may vary. It is very important that you brush at least twice a day with fluoridated toothpaste, floss regularly to remove plaque accumulating between the teeth and gums, and visit Advanced Dentistry regularly for checkups and periodontal maintenance visits.
Does Insurance Cover Treatment?
Dental insurance may cover a portion of your gum disease treatment. Our team will advocate for you on an individual basis to help maximize the part of your treatments funded by your insurance provider. If you do not carry health insurance or have outstanding costs, talk with our financial coordinator about financing plans and other easy payment options accepted at Advanced Dentistry.
Protect the Future of Your Smile
Gum disease at any stage can present a notable threat to your smile, oral health, and systemic well-being. Let our experienced State College, PA dentists and team help protect your smile against harm and reestablish periodontal health. If you believe you may have gingivitis, periodontitis, or an advanced case of gum disease, please get in touch with Advanced Dentistry of Centre County to schedule a periodontal screening.