Chances are you’ve seen those posters and brochures in dental offices, warning of the ravages of gum disease. It’s no wonder: gum disease is the leading cause of permanent tooth loss, and the latest statistics say that up to 80% of Canadians have some form of it.. Gum disease can be a frightening thought. That’s why we are such strong proponents of preventative dentistry, to make certain all our patients have their best chance at maintaining optimal oral health for a lifetime.
Prevention begins with keeping your regular dental appointments. Gum disease starts when untreated plaque and tartar leads to inflammation and infection in the gum tissues. Pain, swelling, and tooth loss soon follow suit.
For those patients already dealing with gum disease, we have treatments to help you fight its progress and deal with its effects.
Scaling and root planing
Scaling is the process of removing plaque and tartar from the teeth, and we do it at every oral hygiene appointment. However, in patients dealing with gum disease, scaling requires a more advanced process, in order to remove the built-up deposits from beneath the gum line, as well as any gum tissue that has become infected. When that scaling has to continue down to the roots of the teeth, this is known as root planing. These two procedures form the cornerstone of the fight against periodontal disease, as a “clean slate” is essential in order for the tissues to heal and fight infection.
As gum disease advances, it will eventually loosen teeth from their position in the gum. Although we will always help you avoid tooth loss, there are times when a tooth is too compromised to remain in the mouth, as it will affect the environment for the neighbouring teeth. In these cases, we will perform a tooth extraction.
The number one way to fight gum disease is to keep those regular oral hygiene appointments and dental checkups! But if you’re already dealing with the effects of periodontal disease, you can count on us to have the treatments and advice you need. At Berwick Family Dentistry, we’re always in your corner.