Roslyn Heights & Manhattan NY
Gum disease is a serious oral health issue that develops as a result of a bacterial infection inside of your mouth. While it may not seem that serious when it first begins many people are completely unaware of its presence in the early stages; it continues to worsen the longer it goes untreated. Gum disease requires different treatments at different stages. Edward I. Jutkowitz, D.M.D., P.C. - Periodontics and Implantology can provide you with the periodontal treatment you need to restore the health of your mouth.
The Progression of Gum Disease
Gum disease begins silently — bacteria that are accumulating in your mouth attack your gum tissue, irritating it. This triggers an inflammatory response from your immune system and your gums swell. Swollen gums eventually begin to pull away from your teeth, which leads to the formation of periodontal pockets. Bacteria, food particles and other debris begin collecting in these pockets. They grow deeper, and your gums begin to recede. Bacteria eventually reach your periodontal ligaments and your jawbone, which causes these supporting structures to weaken. Your teeth become loose and eventually may even fall out.
Scaling and root planing is a common treatment for gum disease. With this treatment, we clean all surfaces of your teeth above and below the gumline. Scaling is the process of cleaning the visible surfaces of your teeth. Using a scaler, we carefully and thoroughly remove all buildup from your teeth, including the most stubborn tartar. Next, we move on to root planing.
Small tools are inserted below the gumline to smooth away plaque, bacteria, and other toxins from your teeth, making it difficult for new bacteria to accumulate. With the root surfaces of your teeth cleaned, your gum tissue can begin to reattach. While scaling and root planing is a minimally invasive treatment, it is often performed under a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort.
Pocket Reduction Surgery
If the periodontal pockets are too deep, we may not be able to clean your teeth all of the ways completely. This means that some bacteria may be left behind. Even though your teeth have been cleaned, gum disease can continue to progress. When periodontal pockets are too deep to clean effectively with scaling and root planing, pocket reduction surgery may be recommended. This procedure involves small incisions in the gums so that we have access to the roots of your teeth and surrounding areas. We are then able to clean your teeth completely. After your gums have been sutured closed, the tissue can begin to reattach to your teeth.
If bacteria reach your periodontal ligaments and jawbone, they begin to attack these supporting structures. They grow weak over time. Bony defects also begin to form. These are areas of bone loss in your jaw, which leave a jagged surface perfect for hiding bacteria. If your jawbone has been affected by gum disease, you may be recommended for osseous surgery. This procedure involves smoothing your jawbone to eliminate hiding places for bacteria. Your bone and teeth are cleaned so that the gum tissue can reattach properly. If you have lost a significant amount of bone mass, a bone graft may also be performed.
Gum disease can cause gum recession. Not only does gum recession affect your smile, but it also impacts your oral health. A gum graft is a surgical procedure that involves transplanting soft tissue over the affected teeth. Your natural gum tissue and the graft tissue fuse together to help form a healthy, natural gumline.
Bone grafting is a surgical procedure that involves transplanting bone mass to weak areas of your jaw with the goal of strengthening your jaw after bone loss. This procedure is often performed when your bone is thought to be too weak to support dental implants properly.
With the right treatment, your gums can begin to reattach to your teeth, and your mouth can heal. For more information, and to schedule your consultation, call Edward I. Jutkowitz, D.M.D., P.C. - Periodontics and Implantology today at (516) 740-1848.