Oral health isn’t just about the health of your teeth—your gums are just as important. Poor brushing and flossing can lead to gingivitis and periodontal disease. As periodontal disease advances, it causes pain, tooth loss, and bone loss in the jaw. Our experienced team of doctors and hygienists provide periodontal treatments to ensure that your gums are healthy and also that they complement your beautiful smile. Once gum disease has been treated, we’ll recommend a periodontal maintenance program with regular visits to our office to remove plaque and calculus.
We offer the following periodontal services:
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is our first line of defense against gum disease. Scaling involves using specialized dental instruments to remove dental plaque and calculus from below the gumline, then planing smooths the surface of the roots of the teeth to encourage your gums to heal and reattach, making it harder for new plaque deposits to accumulate.
The PerioProtect® system is an at-home treatment that consists of customized trays with extensions and seals to maintain a healing periodontal gel inside the pockets. Wear the trays as instructed for healthier gums.
For research articles and case studies on PerioProtect® trays and how they work, please click here.
Arestin® is an antibiotic that is applied to infected periodontal pockets during scaling and root planing for easy, targeted treatment. It uses minocycline microspheres that adhere to the surrounding surfaces for sustained release to eliminate infection. Arestin® doesn’t require local anesthesia, adhesive, dressings, or removal.
Crown lengthening can be performed to expose more tooth structure prior to dental crown placement, but it’s also used as a cosmetic procedure to correct a “gummy smile.” Gum tissue and bone (if needed) are removed to make the teeth appear longer.
In cases where the gums have receded, gum grafting can be used to protect the exposed roots. We remove tissue from the roof of the mouth or from gum tissue near the affected tooth, then stitch it onto the area that needs gingival repair.
Ridge preservation is often performed at the same time as a tooth extraction. It involves placing regenerative bone grafting material into the empty tooth socket to rebuild bone and strengthen the area.
Frequently Asked Questions About Gum Disease
Can gum disease be cured?
Yes, in its early stages, gum disease can be reversed and cured with scaling and root planing, followed by periodontal maintenance.
What does gum disease look like?
The earliest signs of gum disease are swollen, red gums. Eventually, your gums will bleed easily when you brush and floss and you may notice that they’re beginning to recede. Although they can’t be seen, bad breath or a foul taste in the mouth are two additional signs of early gum disease.
Does periodontal scaling hurt?
During scaling and root planing, your gums and the roots of your teeth will be numbed with local anesthetic, so you won’t experience any discomfort. Once the anesthetic wears off, you are likely to feel some tenderness, but this can be alleviated with over-the-counter pain medication.
How long does it take for Arestin to work?
Arestin begins working immediately after placement and continues to fight infection for the next two weeks.
How long does it take for a gum graft to heal?
Gum grafts usually take one to two weeks to heal. You’ll come back to our office after a week has passed so we can ensure your gums are healing properly.