If you have gum disease–also called periodontal disease–treatment is necessary to stop the infection, protect your teeth, and restore your health. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults, and has been associated with numerous major health risks, including several cardiovascular conditions. In addition to regular cleanings, we offer deep cleanings, surgery, and antibiotics to reduce or eliminate gum disease.
Dr. Debra Cederbaum has nearly 30 years of experience treating gum disease in Seattle, and her experience makes her a great judge of which gum disease treatment is appropriate for any gum disease. With a gentle, compassionate touch, she is as dedicated to your comfort as to your health. If you know or suspect you are suffering from gum disease, please call 206-524-1314 or email us today for an appointment.
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is when the bacteria in your mouth have infected the tissues around your teeth. Just as they do to your teeth, the waste from these bacteria can damage the gums and bone around your teeth, making your teeth loose and may even lead to them falling out. Gum disease has two stages: gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis is minor gum disease. In gingivitis your gums become red, swollen, and tender. They often bleed. But the damage remains on the surface and is usually completely reversible. Gingivitis may or may not progress on to periodontitis.
In periodontitis, you have a serious infection. Bacteria are multiplying out of control in your gums, and your body panics at the level of infection, triggering an immune response that is as damaging to you as the infection itself.
Dangers of Gum Disease
Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss. When you have periodontitis, both the bacteria and your body’s own immune response attack the bone and ligaments surrounding your teeth, causing irreversible damage to your jawbone that can lead to a lost tooth.
In addition, gum disease has been linked to increased risk of many cardiovascular health conditions, such as coronary artery disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, and stroke. Oral bacteria have been found living in arterial plaque, and treatment of gum disease can lead to reduced costs of treatment for related conditions.
Treating Gum Disease
The proper treatment for your gum disease depends on the stage of your gum disease. Early stages may be treated by recommending more frequent professional cleanings. After this, we may perform a deep cleaning.
In a deep cleaning, also called a root planing and scaling, we scrape away bacteria and tartar that has accumulated below the gum line. We also smooth the tooth root to help ensure all bacteria have been removed and slow its return. We utilize a new antibacterial treatment called Arestin to help control the infection. This helps prevent the return of bacteria so that your body is able to heal up better after a deep cleaning.
If a deep cleaning does not adequately treat your gum disease, we can perform surgical treatment of gum disease. This is an even more aggressive form of cleaning that involves peeling back your gums, removing bacteria, and suturing your gums back in place so they fit snugly against your teeth.
To learn what treatment is appropriate for your gum disease, please contact us today for an appointment at our dental office in Seattle.