K Street Dental & Orthodontic Group
Cosmetic Dentistry & Orthodontics located in Washington, DC
Gum disease commonly causes bad breath, however, in more serious cases, it can cause tooth loss. If you have early symptoms such as receding or bleeding gums, turn to the team at K Street Dental & Orthodontic Group in Washington, D.C. With their help, you can find nonsurgical treatment options that reverse the negative effects of gum disease and restore your smile. To find out more about your options, book an appointment online or by calling the office today.
Gum Disease Treatment Q & A
What is gum disease?
Gum disease is a condition that occurs when infection and inflammation threaten the health of the soft tissue that holds your teeth together. These soft tissues are comprised of your gums and the supporting bone — it’s essentially a gum and bone disease. Gum disease is very common, affecting 3 out of 4 adults.
Getting high-quality treatment for gum disease is important because its harmful effects extend beyond your oral health. Studies have shown that gum disease is directly linked to an increased risk for serious health problems, including heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
In the early stages of gum disease, you’ll typically experience little to no pain. Therefore, common signs and symptoms, such as puffiness and bleeding, may go unnoticed. However, once you notice signs of gum disease, it’s very important to seek treatment. If left untreated, gum disease can result in severe tooth decay, tooth loss, and bone loss.
What causes gum disease?
There are many different kinds of bacteria that live inside your mouth. While many of these are harmless, some types of bacteria damage your teeth and gums. Good dental hygiene helps keep these bacteria in check. Neglecting to brush and floss allows harmful bacteria to wreak havoc on your oral health.
Gum disease is caused by a growing colony of living, harmful bacteria called “plaque” or “biofilm.” Severe gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in American adults.
Some medical conditions also increase your risk of gum disease. Conditions like diabetes can damage your immune system and make you more prone to infections. Pregnancy can also affect your oral health. If you have any chronic medical conditions, ask your dentist whether they put you at risk for gum disease and if there are additional precautions you should be taking.
How does gum disease treatment work?
At K Street Dental & Orthodontic Group, the team treats gum disease with a method known as Soft Tissue Management®. It’s an organized system for early detection, diagnosis, non-surgical treatment and maintenance of the inflammatory phase of gum disease.
Your personalized Soft Tissue Management includes individualized treatment performed by a dentist and hygienist to reduce infection. The team also makes recommendations for daily home care and maintenance.
In most cases, the treatment also involves a deep cleaning, or scaling and root planing (SRP). This procedure focuses on removing plaque, calculus, and stains from the tooth surface above and below the gumline. SRP helps eliminate bacteria below the gumline and alleviates symptoms of gum disease. After your initial Soft Tissue Management treatment, you’ll come back in for a three-month recare visit.
Why do I need to come back in for a three-month recare visit?
This is a key part of your gum disease treatment. Your dentist will have you return for this three-month recare visit to:
- Monitor and assess signs of gum disease
- Continue the state of health obtained during active treatment
- Prevent the recurrence of previous infections
- Prevent new disease from starting
- Minimize or eliminate the need for surgery or the extraction of teeth
To learn more about gum disease prevention and treatment options, call the office or book an appointment online today.
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