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Periodontal infection, often referred to as gum disease, develops when plaque and tartar are not removed, allowing bacteria to build up between the teeth and the gum tissue. These bacteria can create a number of side effects such as bleeding gums, tenderness, inflammation, sensitivity, or tooth pain.
At Clark Dental Studio, we actively educate our patients about the importance of good oral hygiene and routine preventive services. However, gum disease does not always present any symptoms, which is why we encourage professional cleanings and exams to keep you a step ahead of the problem.
Periodontal disease primarily affects the gums, so it may be difficult to see how your teeth are affected.
Gums play a crucial role in supporting your teeth. They hold your teeth in place and are designed to absorb the impact when you chew or bite down. If there’s a problem with your gums, problems with your teeth usually follow.
Since periodontal disease is progressive, its effects on your teeth will worsen without treatment. More subtle symptoms may begin to develop as the disease progresses. At this point, you may experience discomfort or notice that your teeth are more sensitive.
If left untreated, the disease progresses and small spaces called periodontal pockets open between your teeth and the gums holding them in place. This leaves the teeth unstable and, without treatment, will eventually lead to tooth loss.
Gum disease is not just an oral health problem, either. There is also evidence that bacteria present with gum disease can set off an inflammatory process that can lead to heart attack or stroke. Research has shown that chronic infections in your mouth may be linked to diabetes, pneumonia, and other health problems.
In many cases, if your gum disease has not progressed significantly, a thorough professional cleaning and frequent follow-up visits will usually do the trick. However, if the disease is more advanced, we will recommend a deep cleaning procedure called scaling and root planing.
This procedure is highly effective at treating mild to moderate gum disease, specifically when gum disease has led to pockets forming between the teeth and gums. We must perform scaling and root planing to remove debris below the gum line and close periodontal pockets.
Scaling and root planing is a relatively simple process. First, the hygienist numbs your gums for your complete comfort. Then we use specially designed tools to gently remove calcified tartar and other debris from the teeth, both at and below the gum line. Many of our patients also enjoy the benefits of nitrous oxide, a mild type of sedation we offer that will keep you nice and relaxed throughout the procedure.
If you suffer from gum disease, a deep cleaning offers many benefits to improve oral health. Root planing and scaling can prevent gum disease from leading to major dental problems and prevent the need for more costly dental work. It stops gum disease and prevents decay and possible tooth loss.
If it’s time for your next professional cleaning or you’re showing any of the symptoms of gum disease like bleeding gums, please call our Chattanooga dental office to arrange an appointment.