Periodontal Disease, Wilmington, DE
Periodontal (gum) disease is insidious. It is an infection of the gums that starts out as plaque, an opaque film on the teeth that hardens to form tartar. As tartar accumulates, it harbors bacteria that attack the soft tissue around the gums. This is the early stage of gum disease known as Gingivitis. Left untreated, Gingivitis becomes Periodontitis which ultimately destroys the tissue surrounding your teeth AND the bone that holds your teeth in place. Except for bad breath and gums that bleed, there are very few early warning signals. The disease advances silently, often without pain, and before you know it, you are losing your teeth and you don't know why.
What are the Signs of Gum Disease?
Tooth loss is only the most obvious indicator of gum disease. Scientific research has discovered linkage between gum disease and stroke, heart disease, diabetes - even an increased risk for pregnant women. When your gums become diseased, your entire immune system is weakened.
How is Gum Disease Treated?
In the past, fear of painful dental surgery has kept people with gum disease from seeking the care they needed. Well, those days are gone forever.
If you are dealing with mild to moderate forms of gum disease a simple deep cleaning is usually all that’s needed. Another name for this professional deep cleaning is scaling and root planing. This procedure is performed to prevent the disease from spreading further into the gums, causing serious and permanent damage and eventual tooth loss.
This cleaning is a bit different from the routine cleanings you’re used to when you come in every six months for checkups. This deep cleaning goes under the gums, where we remove tartar and plaque buildup. We even smooth the roots of the tooth to prevent plaque from building up in these areas.
Since we need to go under the gums to remove plaque and tartar buildup, we will also numb the gums before the procedure. This ensures that you feel comfortable and at ease throughout the procedure while we can also get into all the nooks and crannies needed to clean your gums and manage your disease. During your consultation, our dental team will decide whether we will perform the procedure in a single session or whether we will treat certain areas in separate sessions.