Periodontal Therapy – Dunwoody, GA
Ensure Your Teeth Have a Healthy Home
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, affects one out of every two Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This makes it an even more common dental problem than cavities. When left untreated, gum disease can cause a host of other health problems. It’s actually the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States. Fortunately, Dr. Jeff Rodgers does everything in his power to catch this condition in the early stages before it does any serious damage. That’s why we perform a thorough gum exam at every checkup and cleaning. If we spot any signs of gum disease, we’ll develop a customized treatment plan to help ensure your teeth have a healthy home!
What Is Gum Disease?
Every time you eat, the sugars and starches in your food mixes with your saliva and bacteria in your mouth to form a sticky film called plaque. These bacteria feed on the sugars you consume and leave behind an acidic waste product that not only destroys tooth enamel (resulting in cavities), but irritates your gums, causing swelling, redness, and bleeding.
If you don’t regularly remove plaque with daily brushing and flossing, then it hardens into a substance called tartar, which can only be removed by a dental professional. From there, bacteria in tartar can wreak serious havoc on your gums, which is why our team does everything we can to stop this disease in its tracks as soon as we can.
Diagnosing Gum Disease
There are two stages of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis, the first stage, is characterized by:
- Swollen, red, or inflamed gums
- Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
- Persistent bad breath
When gingivitis isn’t treated in a timely manner, it can progress into periodontitis, causing permanent damage. Common signs of advanced gum disease include:
- Receding gums
- Pockets of pus between teeth and gums
- Discomfort when chewing
- Shifting or loose teeth
- Tooth loss
At the first signs of any of these symptoms, it’s imperative that you contact us right away. We’ll closely examine your mouth to determine the best course of treatment.
Is Gum Disease Treatable?
Depending on what stage your gum disease has reached, we’ll create a personalized plan to treat your condition, ease your discomfort, and save your oral health. We offer multiple treatment options, which are listed below:
Scaling and Root Planing
For patients who are suffering from the early stages of gum disease, we may suggest scaling and root planing, also known as a dental deep cleaning. During this procedure, we gently clear away plaque and tartar deposits from above and below your gumline. Then, we smooth out the rough surfaces of your tooth roots. This makes it more difficult for bacteria to reattach to them, significantly decreasing your likelihood of developing gum disease in the future.
We may recommend antibiotic therapy in conjunction with scaling and root planing, particularly if your gum disease has reached the advanced stages. If this is the case, we can apply a topical antibiotic during your deep cleaning to kill any remaining bacteria. We might also prescribe an antibiotic in pill form for you to take for the next few days, just to be on the safe side.
Soft Tissue Laser
Using a soft tissue laser, Dr. Rodgers can treat gum disease quickly, precisely, and with minimal discomfort. This treatment utilizes a highly concentrated beam of light to instantly evaporate plaque and tartar in and around your gums. The light is so accurate that it will only affect the infected tissue, leaving the rest of your healthy gums alone. Laser dentistry not only ensures your procedure will be comfortable, it also assures you’ll have a speedy recovery.