Once a patient has been diagnosed with periodontitis, also known as gum disease, they begin a regimen of periodontal maintenance, which is a more aggressive dental care approach. Although considered a routine appointment, they occur every two to four months as opposed to regular cleaning appointments every six months. Here at O'Sullivan, DeLuca & Ressel Dental Care, our highly trained staff can provide you with periodontal maintenance. Contact us for an appointment now.
Gum disease is a chronic, incurable inflammation of the soft gum tissue underlying the teeth. Typical symptoms include red, swollen gums that are tender when brushed. Sometimes they can even bleed during brushing and flossing. Mouth sores or ulcers can appear in the oral cavity, particularly along the gumline. Patients may notice receding gums as they pull away from teeth. There can also be pus between the gums and teeth, and patients can also have chronic bad breath along with loose or separating teeth. They may also report having difficulty chewing food because of tooth or gum pain.
Gum disease is caused by microscopic bacteria colonies which form along your teeth. The bacteria create plaque, which will become tartar if not removed. This can eventually become periodontal disease, a severe infection, which, if left untreated, can result in potentially life-threatening health problems. Gum disease is incurable and a serious health risk.
The thorough cleaning procedure is designed to halt the progression of periodontal disease. Though it will not cure the disease, it does help slow the progression.
What Happens During Periodontal Maintenance?
Periodontal maintenance is a more in-depth cleaning than that of a standard, routine cleaning. Patients with a history of periodontal disease need deeper cleanings because pockets have formed between the teeth and gums, indicating potential bone loss. This is where plaque and tartar can form. In a healthy mouth, the gum tissue is tightly attached to the teeth. During the exam, the depth of the pockets will be checked. As the disease progresses, these pockets expand and get deeper, destroying supporting bone and soft tissue.
With deeper cleanings, the plaque, tartar, and residual bacteria both above and below the gumline are removed. Because the gum tissue is drawn away from the tooth in pockets, bacteria can begin to actually form not just along the gumline but along the root of the tooth as well. During the cleaning process, our office will perform a root scaling to remove the hardened plaque and eliminate any irregularities in the root surface to keep bacteria from collecting there. X-rays are also an integral part of the periodontal maintenance program in examining the supporting bone structure of the patient’s teeth. These are utilized to check for any bone loss, cavities, or other potential infections.
Benefits of Periodontal Maintenance
Eliminating the bacteria causing gum disease, we can halt its progression. This, in turn, leads to better oral hygiene and overall health, which means our patients will not have to face the potential life-threatening illnesses and conditions which can come by untreated gum disease.
Let our office team at O'Sullivan, DeLuca & Ressel Dental Care perform periodontal maintenance and help stop the progression of gum disease. Call us at (352) 666-9898 to schedule an appointment or visit during regular office hours so we can help you and create a treatment plan best suited for you.