Periodontal disease. Gum disease. Infection. Regardless of the name, this condition is known for wreaking havoc on the smile. Periodontal disease is an infection that often begins in the gum tissues and then spreads, causing damage to the soft tissues, jaw bone, and the natural teeth. This infection is 100% preventable with proper oral healthcare habits. When patients brush and floss their teeth after every meal, visit their dentist every six months for a cleaning and evaluation, and contact their dental team as soon as a problem arises, they are greatly reducing their risk of developing disease and decay.
What are the signs of periodontal disease?
There are a few noticeable signs of periodontal disease that may indicate a problem exists. If patients pay close attention to their oral health, they will notice these issues:
- Bleeding gums
- Red, swollen gums
- Tender gum tissue
- Loose teeth
- Gum recession
- Chronic bad breath
If any of these signs appear between dental visits, patients should contact Dr. Steven E. Holbrook for an evaluation. Treatment of periodontal disease in the earlier stages is more effective and less expensive than treatment in the later stages.
What treatments are available for periodontal disease?
There are several approaches a dentist may take to treat periodontal disease.
- Thorough cleanings – in the earlier stages, often referred to as gingivitis, patients will have a thorough cleaning performed by the dental hygienist. This removes plaque and tartar from the surfaces of the teeth, while allowing for the removal of any food particles that may contribute to the condition.
- Scaling and root planing – later stages of periodontal disease may benefit from scaling and root planing. This is a cleaning of the teeth and gums that include the roots of the teeth, not just the crowns. This is a deeper, more invasive cleaning, but often provides amazing advantages.
- Antibiotics – patients may be prescribed antibiotics to take orally, or the dental team may apply antibiotics directly to the smile to eliminate the infection at the source.
Request a visit with Dr. Steven E. Holbrook today!
Albuquerque, NM patients ready to work with a dentist that has over three decades of experience are encouraged to schedule an appointment with Dr. Steven E. Holbrook today. His practice is located at 8228 Louisiana Boulevard, NE, Ste. C and can be reached by phone at (505) 881-1159.