Periodontics and Gum Disease
Periodontal treatment or periodontics is specialty dental care that addresses periodontal (gum) disease and is available at Wetherill Family Dentistry in Wilmington. Unchecked, gum disease can destroy the gums, tissue, and bones that hold your teeth in place.
At Wetherill Family Dentistry we recommend periodontal treatment if you:
- Have gum disease
- Need a tooth extraction
- Have had a dental implant treatment
What Causes Periodontal Disease?
Plaque, a sticky biofilm of bacteria, is constantly forming on teeth. Periodontal disease typically results from inadequate dental hygiene, which allows plaque buildup on your teeth and under the gums, and on the roots of teeth. Untreated plaque hardens into tartar or calculus, which only professional cleaning can remove.
You might not be aware of periodontal disease in its initial stages. The CDC estimates that 47% of adults in the U.S. ages 30 and older have some form of gum disease. Periodontal disease progresses with age, too, as 70% of adults ages 65 and older have it.
Advanced stages of periodontal disease cause sore or bleeding gums, changes in the bite, and even tooth loss.
What Are My Treatment Options for Periodontal Disease?
The main goal of periodontal treatment is to remove bacteria from the gum pockets around the teeth. This helps prevent further erosion of bone and tissue. Exactly what Dr. Wetherill will do depends on how far your gum disease has progressed.
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical, deep-cleaning treatment for early-stage periodontal disease. The hygienist at Wetherill Family Dentistry removes tartar from the teeth and below the gumline with hand tools or an ultrasonic instrument.
Dr. Wetherill’s hygienist will also smooth rough areas on the roots of the teeth so that bacteria no longer gets trapped there. You may need local or systemic antibiotics to kill the remaining bacteria.
Scaling and root planing may require one or more visits, depending on the buildup of plaque and tartar.
What Are the Telltale Signs of Periodontal Disease?
If you notice any of the following symptoms, you should be checked for periodontal disease:
- Bleeding or swollen gums
- Painful chewing
- Sudden tooth sensitivity
- Persistently bad breath
- Receding gums
- Shifting or loose teeth
Timely periodontal treatments are essential for protecting your dental and overall health.
How to Get the Most Effective Periodontal Treatment
If you are experiencing any of the signs of periodontal disease, contact our office today to set up your appointment for periodontal exam and treatment in Wilmington.