Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a chronic bacterial infection of the gums and the bone that support the teeth. Gum disease occurs when bacteria, in the form of tartar and plaque, accumulate on the surfaces of the teeth and along the gumline.
The doctors and the team of oral healthcare professionals at Chaparral Valley Dental, located near you in Calgary, Alberta, want to educate its patients, current and new, on the detection, the prevention and the treatment of gum disease in its early stages.
The build-up of plaque will lead to red, swollen and bleeding gums, and this early stage is called gingivitis. Over time and without treatment, gingivitis will lead to a more serious condition causing the gums to recede and the bone mass to lose volume.
How is Gum Disease Detected?
The screening for gum disease is a part of a routine comprehensive dental exam. The screening is the measuring and recording of pockets between the gum tissue and the teeth, and the visual examination to detect any recession, plaque build-up or inflammation. If any of these conditions are detected during the visual exam, then x-rays will be taken to monitor the amount of plaque that may have accumulated below the gumline.
All of the above are used to determine and monitor the presence and the severity of gum disease.
How Can Gum Disease be Prevented?
In its early stages, gum disease can be prevented by plaque removal from the practice of an effective oral hygiene regimen that includes daily brushing, flossing and rinsing with an antiseptic mouth rinse. Regular dental check-ups twice per year are a part of an effective oral regimen.
The regular use of an antiseptic mouth rinse will reduce the amounts of bacteria in the mouth. However, the use of a mouth rinse supplements brushing and flossing; it does not replace them.
How is Gum Disease Treated?
When gum disease is detected, the treatment involves a deep cleaning that is more invasive than the cleaning given during a regular check-up. This deep cleaning is called scaling and root planing. Plaque and tartar are removed both above and below the gumline. The dentist may also use a prescription mouth rinse to lower the bacteria levels.
The patient will have a follow-up appointment in 6-8 weeks for an additional screening to ensure that all signs of gum disease have been eliminated. If any signs of the disease remain, then the dentist will determine a more aggressive treatment plan.
If you would like a consultation for additional information on gum disease, or if you have a concern about symptoms you may be experiencing, then please contact the oral healthcare professionals at Chaparral Valley Dental where new patients are always welcome.
Chaparral Valley Dental is trusted and highly recommended the prevention and treatment of gum disease, as well as other procedures in general, restorative and cosmetic dentistry.