Your teeth may be the part of your smile that everyone notices, but believe it or not, your gums are just as important. Without your gum tissue, there would be no foundation for your pearly whites. Infected gum tissue can not only be incredibly painful, but it can lead to complications down the road that might cause you to lose your teeth. As soon as you notice the symptoms of gum disease (also known as periodontal disease), such as bleeding gums, tenderness, redness, or sensitive teeth, give us a call and let us know so that we can get you scheduled for periodontal therapy in Annapolis. Drs. Gary and Jeremy Goodman will create a customized treatment plan to stop the infection in its tracks before it causes any lasting harm.
Several factors can contribute to the development of gum disease, such as genetics and lifestyle choices. The most common cause is the accumulation of plaque on the teeth and gumline. Plaque is a sticky biofilm that builds up in your mouth constantly. You can disrupt it on your own with daily brushing and flossing, but if you neglect these habits, plaque can harden into tartar. At that point, it can only be removed by a dental professional.
Tartar is chock full of dangerous bacteria that can irritate your gums, causing them to bleed or become red and tender. In the early stages of gum disease, symptoms are mild, but eventually, the infection reaches the point where you have persistent bad breath, a chronic bad taste in your mouth, or pus forming in your gums. Gum disease may even culminate in your teeth becoming loose or falling out altogether. For this reason, it’s crucial that you report any unusual symptoms to us as soon as possible. Doing so could save your smile!
Fortunately, there are ways to treat periodontal disease before it reaches the point of causing serious damage. Here are the most common and effective ways of dealing with gum disease:
Our main goal when treating gum disease is twofold: we want to remove the bacteria causing the infection and give your gums an opportunity to heal and reattach to your teeth. To accomplish this, we perform a scaling and root planing procedure, otherwise known as a dental deep cleaning. Your dentist in Annapolis will use special instruments to scrape off (or scale) built-up plaque and tartar from areas where your toothbrush or floss might not have been able to reach. Then, we’ll smooth (or plane) the teeth’s roots to prevent bacteria from adhering to them in the future while speeding up the recovery process.
Often used in conjunction with scaling and root planing, antibiotic therapy involves applying a topical medication directly to your infected gums to kill any bacteria that might still remain even after a dental deep cleaning. We may also prescribe an antibiotic in pill form for you to take over a few days, just to eliminate as many bacteria as possible.