Are You Dealing With Periodontal Gum Disease?
Do you have periodontal disease? The disease, also called gum disease, can cause severe pain, loosen your teeth and even destroy the bone in your jaw. Fortunately, several dental treatments can help reverse the changes caused by the disease. Our Bethesda, MD, dentist, Dr. John Kelly, discusses symptoms of periodontal disease and explains treatment options.
Bleeding shouldn't be ignored
Do your gums bleed when you brush your teeth? Bleeding may be a sign of gingivitis, the initial stage of periodontal disease. Other symptoms may include gum swelling, bad breath or receding gums. Prompt treatment of gingivitis can help you avoid the unpleasant consequences of periodontitis, the more severe form of the disease. Gingivitis is treated with a deep cleaning in our Bethesda office. Unlike a regular dental cleaning, a deep cleaning removes plaque and tartar from both above and below the gum line.
Gaps around your teeth aren't normal
Periodontitis causes your gums to pull away from your teeth, forming pockets infected with bacteria. If you have periodontitis, other symptoms may include bright red gums, pain when you chew, pus around your teeth, chronic bad breath and loose teeth. Antibiotics kill the bacteria but do nothing to improve the condition of your gums. Luckily, several treatments can restore your gums and improve your oral health.
Flap surgery eliminates the pockets. After tartar is removed from your teeth, your gums are firmly stitched around your teeth. In some cases, laser surgery is used to treat pockets. If damaged gum tissue must be removed during surgery, gum grafts can be used to replace the missing tissue. You may also benefit from bone grafts if the infection destroyed part of your jawbone. Lost teeth can be replaced with dental implants, restorations that bond to your jawbone and feel very much like natural teeth. If you choose this restoration option, you'll need to wait for your gums to heal completely before proceeding.
Regular dental exams and cleanings can reduce your periodontal disease risk. If it's been a while since you've seen a dentist, or you're concerned that you have gum disease, call Bethesda, MD, dentist, Dr. Kelly, at (301) 657-3220 to schedule an appointment.