If you need treatment for your gums, you’re not alone. About half of all Americans over the age of 30 have gum disease – that’s over 64 million people.
Fortunately, our team in Gibsonia, PA has gum therapy treatments that can restore the health of your gums. While you may not think about your gums very often, they are connected to the health of the rest of your body. Poor gum health has been linked to everything from strokes to cancer, so it’s vital to seek treatment for your gum disease before it leads to bigger problems down the road. Explore some of the reasons you may need gum therapy and learn about what that therapy entails.
Gum Disease – Not to Be Taken Lightly
The most common cause of gum disease is from dental neglect – as sugars accumulate at the base of your teeth, they attract plaque and can cause infection in the gums. This eventually causes infectious pockets to develop in the gums and can lead to worse forms of gum disease.
Understanding the 3 Stages of Gum Disease
Gum disease has three stages and they span a wide spectrum of symptoms and threats to your health. One of the most menacing aspects of gum disease is that it will quickly get worse if left untreated. Here is a brief description of each stage.
When plaque builds up at the gumline, it can cause gingivitis. In this earliest stage of gum disease, your gums will appear red and irritated. One positive indicator involving gingivitis is that the connective tissues are not yet affected, but that can quickly change if left untreated.
Once your connective tissues, supportive bones, and fibers have been damaged beyond repair, you now have periodontitis. Another key trait of periodontitis is that infected pockets will start to form beneath the gum line. There is still no danger of completely losing your teeth at this stage.
3. Advanced Periodontitis
At the most severe stage of gum disease, advanced periodontitis, the connective tissues and fibers have been destroyed. This means your teeth may be loose or may move around while biting or speaking. Among the treatments for advanced periodontitis are surgery and tooth extraction, so it’s far easier to treat your gum disease in the earlier stages.
List of Symptoms – How To Know If You Have Gum Disease
If you’ve noticed that you have some of these symptoms, then you may have untreated gum disease:
- Bad breath (Halitosis)
- Pain in teeth while eating
- Visible pockets developing in the gums
- Gums are red, sore, and sensitive
- Teeth are loose or fall out
- Gums bleed when you brush your teeth
Gum Therapy – How We Treat Gum Disease
The main treatments for gum disease include medications, deep cleanings, and other more severe options such as surgery. Here is what you can expect from each of these:
The primary treatment for early forms of gum disease is known as scaling and root planing. This procedure is like a thorough cleaning that goes all the way down to the gum line. Scaling refers to scraping tartar from around the gum line and root planing refers to thoroughly cleaning the roots of your teeth.
Prescription medications may also be prescribed to fight gum disease. Here are some of the most common examples of gum-related medications:
– Antibiotic Gel
– Antibiotic Microspheres
– Antiseptic Chips
– Enzyme Suppressant
– Oral Antibiotics
For severe cases of gum disease, surgery may be the only option. This can include extractions and restorations, bone and tissue grafts, or flap surgery which improves the appearance of your teeth. Surgery will be the last resort for treating gum disease, but in cases of advanced periodontitis, it may be the patient’s best bet at restoring the look and function of their smile.
Let Our Treatments Eliminate Your Gum Disease
Time is an important factor when treating gum disease. Letting another week or month go by can make your symptoms far worse, eventually putting you at risk of losing your teeth. Dr. Foust and his team are experts at spotting the earliest signs of gum disease and can provide the treatments you need to put an end to your gum problem for good. Contact our office in Gibsonia, PA to schedule an appointment and see how we can help.