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Tempe, AZ 85284

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Gum Treatment

gum treatment tempe arizonaGum disease – also known as periodontal disease – is a common, yet dangerous oral health condition. When gum disease goes undiagnosed and untreated, it will eventually wreak havoc on a patient’s oral health, and even his or her general wellbeing. At Beautiful Dentistry, Dr. Heap and our staff provide periodontal disease treatment that can stop its progression and destruction of oral tissue while improving a person’s overall oral health. In addition to preventive services such as oral health education and standard dental cleanings, our practice offers scaling and root planing and laser dentistry therapy.

The Onset and Advancement of Gum Disease

Gum disease begins when irritants inflame and infect the gingival tissue. The gums are an important component of the oral health system; they support the placement of teeth while also protecting the roots of teeth from exposure to plaque and tartar accumulation. When the gums become inflamed and irritated, they will pull away from the teeth, leaving roots vulnerable to irritants and debris.

Untreated periodontal disease also means that the infection associated with gum disease can spread throughout the mouth and even enter a person’s bloodstream. Since gum disease weakens the bond between teeth and gingiva, teeth can become loose. Unsupported teeth are vulnerable to infection, movement, and even falling out. Moreover, the infection associated with periodontal disease can erode bone mass in the jaw.

Treating Periodontal Disease

Once gum disease advances to a certain point, it is only manageable and not curable. When our practice detects signs of gum disease, Dr. Heap will develop a custom treatment plan that addresses the infection and tartar accumulation. Periodontal therapy will also help encourage new soft tissue growth so that the gums can possibly reattach to teeth. Common treatment methods include root scaling and planing and laser-assisted periodontal therapy.

Root scaling and planing are actually two different procedures; but they are often performed in one visit. The goal of this treatment is to remove tartar accumulation below the gum line – especially along the roots of teeth. Once tartar begins to accumulate on the roots, the rough and textured surface of tooth structure make it more likely that tartar will collect along the roots in the future. To help prevent this from happening, the roots of teeth are gently filed and smoothed. Depending on a patient’s unique situation, this type of therapy may be administered in increments.

Soft tissue lasers are also used to remove infected gum tissue. These lasers can clean deep within the gums without the need for cutting and sutures. Laser therapy can also encourage the reattachment of gum tissue.

To learn more about the services we offer, or to reserve an appointment with Dr. Heap, contact our team at Beautiful Dentistry.

Common Questions

Gingivitis is the mildest form of gum disease, causing issues such as redness, swelling or bleeding but no evidence of receding gums or other more severe symptoms. Gingivitis often can be reversed with just a thorough professional dental cleaning, while other more advanced forms of gum disease typically require more invasive interventions.

Periodontal disease is an inflammation of the gum tissue that causes symptoms such as redness, swelling or bleeding of the gum tissue, often along the gumline. Periodontal disease is a progressive disease that causes more serious symptoms in its advanced stages, known as periodontitis. These symptoms include receding gums, bone loss and loose teeth.

Gum disease occurs when harmful oral bacteria, which are found in plaque and tartar, attack the gum tissue and cause inflammation, which leads to the telltale symptoms of gum disease. Fortunately, gum disease can be prevented, and patients should be diligent in their efforts to avoid developing this condition.

Although periodontal disease can have serious consequences for patients, the good news is that the condition is largely preventable. Because oral bacteria are the main culprit in gum disease, anything a patient can do to keep them in check will offer some protection against gum disease. This includes brushing your teeth twice each day, for two minutes each time and using proper technique. Angling your brush along the gumline will help to disrupt plaque formation. You also need to floss daily to clean the surfaces of your teeth that your toothbrush may not reach.

Getting a professional dental cleaning every six months is another important weapon in the fight against gum disease. A dental hygienist can access the hard-to-reach parts of your smile more easily than you can, and professional-grade instruments are highly effective at removing plaque and tartar left behind even after brushing and flossing.

Even if you’re diligent about your home oral hygiene routine and getting adequate dental care from professionals, you should still monitor your gums for signs of gingivitis (early-stage gum disease), such as bleeding (even during brushing), redness or swelling in the gums. Gingivitis responds well to a relatively conservative treatment, so seeing your dentist as soon as possible after you develop symptoms will benefit you in the long run.

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