Gum Therapy or Scaling and Root Planing (SRP) – is the most effective way to treat your gum disease. During an SRP, the dentist or his hygienist cleans between the gums and teeth, down below the gumline. In most cases, Dr. Nguyen will use a local anesthetic for this procedure to ensure that you are as comfortable as possible during this process. It is important that individuals with gum (periodontal) disease have this procedure done, then follow up with their Perio Maintenance cleanings every 3-4 months after an SRP to ensure control over returning bacteria.
frequently asked questions
What is gum (periodontal) disease?
Gum disease (also called periodontal disease) is an infection of the gums that can spread and destroy the structures that supports your teeth and jawbone. It is a major cause of tooth loss in many adults. Currently there are more than 3 million US cases per year. Because gum disease can be painless, you may not know you have it. It is currently estimated that over half of all Americans suffer from some form of gum disease.
Gum disease is caused by built up plaque, which is bacteria that constantly forms on your teeth. This bacteria will create toxins that weakens and potentially damages your gums. In the earliest stage of Periodontal Disease you may first have what is called gingivitis. The gums become bright red, swollen and will bleed easily, especially while brushing and flossing. At this stage, the disease is still reversible and can usually be treated with a proper home care routine. Brushing and flossing regularly is the overall best way to avoid it from progressing. In the more advanced stages of Periodontal Disease, called Periodontitis, the gums and tooth structures that support the teeth can become seriously damaged. Then the teeth can become loose, even fall out or may have to be extracted. You may even notice spaces between your teeth that weren’t there before or an unpleasant odor from your breath.
If you notice any these or any of the following signs of gum disease, Call Dr. Nguyen immediately for an examination:
- Gums that bleed when you brush or floss your teeth
- New spacing between teeth (caused by bone loss)
- Tenderness or Discomfort
- Loosened teeth
- Bad odor to your breath that doesn’t go away
- Receding gums (loss of gum around a tooth)
- Bright Red, swollen or tender gums
Do I really need a “deep cleaning”?
As mentioned above, gum disease is typically non-painful, progressive infection which leads to unnecessary tooth loss. We mistakenly think that tooth loss is an inevitable part of the aging process. Additionally, many patients still think that all dental problems should cause at least some minor pain. Therefore thinking the lack of pain indicates that we are healthy. In fact, we lose our teeth primarily due to neglect and poor oral hygiene at home. Additionally, any pain from periodontal disease only occurs in the most advanced stages or abscessed cases, if at all.
Research on gum disease has properly demonstrated that like any other disease, the earlier it’s diagnosed and treated, the easier it will be to treat and maintain control on the infection for longer lasting results. What are the risks of periodontal gum disease?
We now know that if left untreated, gum disease infections can spread and affect other bodily systems. It is important to see your dentist every 6 months to stop this condition and treat it before it leads to further complications. These can include:
Heart Disease and Heart Attack – Previous studies have shown that people with periodontal gum disease are 2.7 times more likely to suffer a heart attack, than a person with healthy gums.
Stroke – Current research has shown, that adults with periodontal disease are nearly 3 times more likely to suffer from a stroke.
Premature Babies – Women with periodontal disease are up to 8 times more likely to give premature birth to a low birth-weight baby.
Diabetes – Periodontal disease can also raise blood sugar in diabetic patients. Periodontal treatment can often result in a reduced need for medication or insulin.
Your Bacteria can be transmitted – Recent Research using DNA testing has found that periodontal bacteria can be transmitted from parent to child and even spouse to spouse. This potentially means putting your loved ones at serious risk of developing this condition as well. How can I prevent gum disease?
The best way to prevent gum disease is a good oral hygiene regimen at home, including daily brushing and flossing, as well as regular professional examinations and cleanings. Unfortunately, even with the most thorough home care, people still can develop some form of gingivitis or periodontal disease. Modification of current risk factors (such as smoking) can be extremely helpful. Once this disease starts, professional intervention is necessary to prevent it from progressing. Call our office today to find out how Dr. Nguyen can help you prevent or control periodontal disease.
we’d love to help you!
We would love to help care for your and/or your family’s dental health care needs. SCHEDULE APPOINTMENT
4605 West Bailey Boswell Rd., Ste#140
Fort Worth, TX 76179
Monday // 9:00am-6:00pm
Tuesday // 9:00am-6:00pm
Wednesday // Closed
Thursday // 9:00am-6:00pm
Friday // 9:00am-6:00pm
Saturday // 9:00am-4:00pm By Appointment Only