Periodontal treatment methods depend upon the type and severity of the disease. Your dentist and dental hygienist will evaluate for periodontal disease and recommend the appropriate treatment.
Periodontal disease progresses as the sulcus (pocket or space) between the tooth and gums gets filled with bacteria, plaque, and tartar, causing irritation to the surrounding tissues. When these irritants remain in the pocket space, they can cause damage to the gums and eventually, the bone that supports the teeth!
If the disease is caught in the early stages of gingivitis and no damage has been done, we will typically recommend two cleanings per year. You will also be given instructions on improving your daily oral hygiene habits and having regular dental cleanings.
If the disease has progressed to more advanced stages, a special periodontal cleaning called scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) will be recommended. One or two quadrants of the mouth will be scaled and root planed at a time while the area is numb. In this procedure, tartar, plaque, and toxins are removed from above and below the gum line (scaling) and rough spots on root surfaces are made smooth (planing). This procedure helps gum tissue to heal and pockets to shrink. Medications, special medicated mouth rinses, and an electric tooth brush may be recommended to help control infection and healing.
If the pocket depths do not heal after scaling and root planing or supplemental therapies such as laser or Arestin treatment, periodontal surgery may be needed to reduce pocket depths, making them easier to clean. Your dentist may also recommend that you see a Periodontist- a doctor that specializes in periodontal disease (disease of the gums and supporting bone).
Laser Therapy: A diode laser can be used to treat the biofilm in the tissue wall in diseased pockets. The laser kills the bacteria present and "decontaminates" the pocket.
Arestin: Antibiotic powder that is placed in the pockets to kill the bacteria that are causing periodontal disease
Medicated Mouth Rinses:
- Prescription fluoride rinses
- Chlorhexidine- a prescription antimicrobial rinse