During a checkup, your gums are examined for periodontal problems. A special instrument called a periodontal probe is used to measure and assess the gum health, bone health, and levels of inflammation.
When periodontal disease is present, there will be higher levels of plaque and bacteria causing chronic inflammation, bleeding, pus, and bone loss. The plaque found on your teeth are home to more than 300 different species of bacteria.
“Plaque is a bacterial challenge to the human body. It is an infection.”
Depending on the severity of the inflammation, bacteria, and bone loss, your dental hygienist and dentist will discuss treatment options right for you.
If it has been many years since your last cleaning, likely there will be a significant amount of tarter and plaque buildup on your teeth. These harmful bacteria can settle below your gumline releasing toxins that cause early symptoms of gingivitis, inflammation, and bleeding in the gums. It may be recommended to have a special type of cleaning called a Debridement. A special instrument is used to remove the large amount of bacteria to prevent the spread and ultimately halt gingivitis.
If your Doctor has determined that the harmful bacteria has started to create destruction of the surrounding gum tissue and or bone, she will recommend Scaling and Root Planing.
The first non-surgical step involves a special cleaning. This is sometimes referred to as a deep cleaning. A local anesthetic is given to reduce any discomfort. Special instruments are used to clean below the gumline and along the root of the tooth. The chronically inflamed tissue is debrided. This procedure helps the gum tissue to heal, decrease or stop inflammation, and prevent further bone destruction. The goal is to control and prevent the active periodontal disease from spreading.
Periodontal disease does require frequent maintenance cleanings called Periodontal Maintenance Therapy. These hygiene therapy appointments are scheduled on a 3-4-month frequency.