Gums are an important barrier in the mouth, keeping bacteria from inner areas and giving support to teeth. Periodontal disease is a real concern for many Americans. However, some may be unaware of the issue or be ignoring early symptoms of the condition. The dental professionals at Arvada Dental Center can help patients understand more about periodontal disease and learn more about their treatment options.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is a gum disease that occurs to almost half of adults from age 30 and over. Periodontal disease appears to occur more often as individuals age, with approximately 3 of every 4 senior citizens and elderly individuals have some form of it. Brushing and flossing can help remove plague on teeth. When plaque is not removed, it becomes tartar and requires a professional cleaning. This buildup of plaque and bacteria can irritate gums, leading to inflammation and more.

Periodontal disease is a more severe form of gingivitis. Early symptoms of gingivitis are inflamed gums and bleeding when teeth are brushed. Individuals may not think much of this change to their gums as there may be little discomfort associated with it. However, when the condition is ignored it becomes periodontitis or periodontal disease.

As the condition progresses, gums begin to pull away from affected areas, creating deep pockets where bacteria collects and multiplies. This issue needs more than brushing and flossing, and a professional cleaning of scaling treatment is often useful. The area of deep pockets is susceptible to continued inflammation and potential infection. Symptoms of periodontal disease include:

  • Persistent bad breath
  • Redness of gums
  • Gum inflammation
  • Bleeding gums
  • Recession of gums
  • Painful chewing
  • Teeth sensitivity
  • Tooth loss

Some people are at higher risk of developing gum disease. Diabetes, hormonal changes in women, certain medications, genetic susceptibility and smoking may increase the risk of developing this gum disease. It is recommended that those experiencing one or more of the symptoms above schedule an appointment with their dentist.

Treatments for Periodontal Disease

Aside from the treatments available, patients need to begin practicing a good oral care routine. It may also be necessary to change specific behaviors to see better results from the treatments suggested. Depending on the severity of the condition, periodontal disease treatments include:

  • Non-surgical treatments like dental cleaning, scaling and root planning;
  • Surgical treatments including flap surgery, bone grafts, soft tissue grafts, guided tissue regeneration and bone surgery; and
  • Antibiotic treatments such as chlorhexidine, doxycycline, tetracycline and minocycline.
  • Some treatments may be used in combination to treat the condition. The majority of treatments will be able to be performed in the office. Patient response to treatment varies.

Maintain Healthy Gums and Teeth

Residents in and around the Arvada, Wheat Ridge, Westminster and the surrounding western Denver Metro area can rely on the experienced team at Arvada Dental Center. Many people can avoid developing periodontal disease and prevent the reoccurrence of periodontal disease. Family, cosmetic, implant, preventative and restorative dental services are available from Dr. Bennett and the staff. Contact an Arvada Dental Center to learn more about the stages of periodontal disease and how to improve the health of gums and teeth.