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Periodontal (gum) Treatments


Dental disease can affect teeth or gums and in some cases both teeth and gums can carry disease individually.

Diseases that affect the supporting structures of the teeth can involve the gums only and therefore lead to inflammation called gingivitis. This condition can be reversed to give healthy gums by instituting good oral hygiene measures which include tooth brushing correctly and well and flossing between the teeth regularly. In addition to this, prevention of gingivitis can take place by routine visits to the dentist for dental hygiene sessions every six months. These sessions involve a scale and polish and oral hygiene instruction on the use of various dental aids which help in eliminating deposits in all areas of the mouth and thereby maintaining the gums in a healthy state.

If gingivitis is not kept under control and is therefore not resolved, the disease can then affect deeper tissues leading to periodontitis or periodontal disease.

Tooth loss in adults is commonly caused by periodontal (gum ) disease.

For periodontitis, the inflammation and disease that affects deeper tissues is treated by scaling and deep cleaning by a technique called root planing. This treatment eliminates plaque and tartar that is attached to the root surfaces of the teeth. Repeated visits for this treatment improves the attachment of the gum and bone to the teeth and also reduces ‘pocketing’ which are spaces that form between the teeth and the gums in a diseased state. Both the loss of attachment and pocketing, if left untreated will lead to tooth loss. In advanced periodontal disease, surgical intervention may be necessary to prevent tooth loss.

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