Fort Smith, AR
Here at Harper Dental we are experts when it comes to periodontal care. Anything with the tag periodontal has something to do with the gums. Periodontal diseases attack the bone supporting the teeth and the gum. Other than the direct effects the disease has on the gum and bone, the disease has been linked with other health complications such as heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and respiratory infections.
Despite the risks associated with periodontal diseases, many people fail to notice they have a problem until the condition has become severe. Research has shown that eight out of ten people who have periodontal disease are unaware of it, especially in the early stages, since it is painless. Periodontal care encompasses a couple of procedures that clean the teeth and gums to remove plaque and bacteria.
Signs of Periodontal Disease
Some of the common signs of periodontal disease are bleeding gums, loose teeth, bad breath, and increased spacing between the teeth. Our dentists can easily call out periodontal disease after conducting a dental exam. A periodontal probe is used to measure the space (sulcus) between gums and the teeth. The probe helps the experts to determine the depth of the pockets. Normal pockets should have a depth of three millimeters. The pockets tend to get deeper as the disease becomes more severe.
Other aspects used to determine the severity of periodontal disease are tooth mobility, bleeding intensity, cases of inflammation, and the color of the gums. Periodontal disease has three stages, and these factors can reveal the stage of the disease.
Stages of Periodontal Disease
Gingivitis is the first stage of the disease. At this stage, the gums are tender, inflamed, and appear to bleed. The next stage is periodontitis where the plaque has now hardened to into tartar. The gum starts to separate itself from the teeth, the pockets deepen and start developing pus. At this point, many bacteria have accumulated in the pockets. From this stage, the disease graduates to advanced periodontitis. If not treated, the teeth become loose and become detached from the gum.
Our dentist will first carefully examine you to determine the method of treatment to use. The treatment depends on the severity and stage of the disease. If the disease is in its early stages, our dentist will most likely recommend one or two cleaning procedures. In cases where the periodontal disease has progressed to advanced stages, our dentists conduct a special cleaning procedure known as root planing and scaling.
The procedure involves removing plaque, tartar, and bacteria from below and above the gumline. All the stains and films on your tooth enamel will be removed in the process as well. The procedure is performed on one quadrant of the mouth at a time. Your gums should heal within a few days after the procedure, and the issues of bleeding gums and bad odor will be gone.
The procedure is quite simple and takes only one appointment. Our dentist will administer local anesthesia to you to ensure it does not feel uncomfortable. Call Harper Dental at (479) 431-0280 today if you have any questions or concerns about the procedure.