Periodontal (gum) disease affects the majority of Americans, with as many as 75 percent of people over the age of 35 suffering from some level of the condition. Gum disease should be treated as soon as possible to avoid its serious side effects, like poor heart health and eventual tooth loss. Our dentist provides non-surgical periodontal therapy in Lebanon.
How to tell if you have gum disease? How does gum disease treatment work? And how do you keep your gums healthier from now on? Let’s take a look at these important questions regarding your periodontal health.
How Do I Know If I Have Gum Disease?
Do you suspect you are suffering from gum disease? Considering that the majority of people are dealing with the disease to some extent, chances are good that you may be, too. Learn how to recognize the symptoms of gum disease to seek quick treatment.
Signs you may have periodontal disease include the following:
- Red, swollen gums
- Chronic bad breath
- Gums that bleed after brushing and flossing
- Gum recession, or pulling away from the teeth
- Increasingly sensitive teeth
Risk factors for gum disease include age (over 35), tobacco use, poor dental hygiene, and diseases that affect the immune system, among other factors. Let your dentist know if you are at an increased risk for the development of periodontal disease.
How Is Gum Disease Treated?
Your periodontal therapy will depend on the level of your disease. In its earliest stages, gum disease can be reversed with improved at-home care, like better brushing and flossing habits, and a few extra visits to the dentist. After gum disease progresses, increased attention will be necessary.
Scaling and root planing, also known as a deep cleaning, is a non-surgical treatment that cleans above and below the gum line. Special tools are used to remove the bacteria buildup on the tooth and its root. Several visits to the dentist may be required to fully remove the infection, and scaling and root planing may also be combined with antibiotic therapy to return your gums to good health.
If gum disease has progressed beyond these initial stages, surgical treatment may be required. For especially advanced cases of gum disease, we may partner with a local periodontist to help you enjoy good periodontal health once again.
How Do I Keep My Gums Healthy?
After you have received gum disease treatment, make sure you are keeping up with excellent oral hygiene habits at home to keep your gums and teeth strong and infection-free. You already know the basics of good dental health. Brush your teeth for two minutes, after each meal, or at least twice a day. Floss daily to remove the particles between teeth that your toothbrush cannot remove. Maintain regular preventive visits with your dentist to catch tooth decay and gum disease in the beginning stages.
When was your last visit to Lebanon Dental? If it has been more than six months, you are overdue for your preventive care. Contact us to schedule an appointment today!