Gum Disease Treatment in Brandon, FL
One oral health issue we frequently see at Walker & Barr, DMD, is gingivitis or periodontal disease. This bacterial infection of gum tissue is characterized by red or puffy gums, bad breath, gums that bleed while brushing or flossing, and eventually loose teeth resulting from bone loss.
Unfortunately, gum disease is prevalent and affects 47 percent of US adults over age 30. The good news is that it is highly preventable and treatable in its early stages.
The American Dental Association and the American Heart Association have also determined that periodontal disease is linked to more than 50 systemic health problems, including heart attack, heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, and stroke.
Gingivitis: Early-Stage Gum Disease
The first stage of gum disease is gingivitis, and the most common symptom is bleeding gums. A common misconception is that it is normal for gums to bleed sometimes, but this is false.
Bleeding gums are never normal and are a sign of gingivitis or early-stage gum disease. Gum disease is progressive, and left untreated, gingivitis will advance to periodontitis.
Periodontitis: Advanced Gum Disease
One sign of periodontitis is gum recession, where gums pull away from the teeth and make them appear larger or longer. Gum recession leads to deep pockets between the teeth and gums, which are a breeding ground for bacteria and further infection.
Any remaining healthy bone supporting the teeth will begin to deteriorate, causing teeth to loosen and sometimes fall out. Unfortunately, untreated periodontitis is the number one cause of adult tooth loss in the US.
Expert Gum Disease Treatment in Brandon, FL
Dr. Walker and Dr. Barr evaluate each of our patient's oral health needs to determine the level of dental care necessary to treat any periodontal conditions they may find.
Gingivitis is reversible with prompt treatment, which involves a thorough teeth cleaning with one of our expert hygienists. Treatment involves removing plaque and tartar above and below the gumline and making recommendations to get the most out of your brushing and flossing efforts at home.
Deep Cleaning Treatment for Periodontitis
Periodontitis is not reversible, but a deep cleaning treatment known as scaling and root planing can prevent the disease from advancing. Our hygienist uses a specialized instrument called a scaler to remove plaque and tartar buildup from all tooth surfaces, including the periodontal pocket where bacteria hide.
The final step is planing or smoothing the root surfaces to help the gums reattach more easily to the tooth after treatment. Depending on the severity of your case, a deep cleaning treatment may require a local anesthetic and more than one appointment to complete.
Afterward, our hygienist will review your oral hygiene habits and nutrition. If you smoke, they will recommend that you quit, as smokers are twice as likely to develop gum disease as non-smokers.
Book a Periodontal Exam in Brandon, FL
Home care and routine dental cleanings and exams with our dental team are fundamental to maintaining your overall oral health and preventing gum infections. Brushing and flossing routinely to remove plaque and bacteria is also crucial.
If you have any questions about gum disease or want to schedule a teeth cleaning with one of our amazing hygienists, call our Brandon, FL, dental office today at (813) 689-5928.
We also provide expert gum disease treatment for friends and neighbors in the surrounding communities of Valrico, Riverview, Seffner, Plant City, Apollo Beach, Tampa, and beyond.