Periodontal disease, sometimes referred to as gum disease, can wreak havoc on your gums, teeth, and overall oral health. Thankfully, there are many dental procedures that can help to stop its progression— including periodontal surgery.
Understanding Periodontal Disease
Millions of people - both adults and children - are faced with the damaging effects of periodontal disease. Bacteria and food particles that have been left behind in the mouth can begin to form plaque and tartar. As it builds, pockets of bacteria can appear within the gums causing inflammation and even infection within the soft tissue.
Periodontal disease comes in phases. It starts out as minor gingivitis, leaving you with minor bleeding or irritated gums. But it then progresses into periodontitis — progressively getting worse, causing damage to the jawbone and leading to tooth loss.
Maintaining good oral hygiene and visiting the dentist every six months for a professional cleaning is the best way to prevent gum disease from happening in the first place. With these routine appointments, early diagnosis is possible – which can lead to treatment before things get out of hand. But while only gingivitis can be reversed, there are many treatments available to stop any further damage from periodontal disease.
What is Periodontal Surgery?
When non-surgical periodontal treatments, such as scaling and root planing, no longer work, your periodontist may recommend surgery.
Periodontal surgery can include many different types of treatment, including:
- Crown Lengthening
- Pocket Reduction/Elimination
- Gum Grafting
- Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique
- Bone Grafting
- Regenerative Periodontics
- Ridge Preservation
The idea behind each of these treatments is to minimize the effects of periodontal disease on the teeth and gums so that good oral health can be obtained.
The Primary Goal of Periodontal Surgery
The primary goal of periodontal surgery is to help patients maintain their oral health in the future.
Dentists – especially periodontists – understand the value of protecting natural teeth. While there are alternative replacement teeth available, such as dental implants, none can compare to the real thing.
By encouraging patients to focus on preventative care and better oral hygiene, they are able to address any periodontal issues as they arise. And, in turn, reduce the need for periodontal surgery.
Of course, for one reason or another, gum disease is going to progress for some patients. Sometimes, it is even going to require more than basic, non-surgical periodontal treatment. When patients require periodontal surgery, the primary goal is to reduce as much damage as possible in order to restore oral health and ensure the functionality of teeth and gums.
What’s more, periodontists will follow up with patients after the surgery to educate them about gum disease and the oral health problems it causes. Surgery halts progress, giving them another opportunity to do what is necessary to protect their natural teeth.
Periodontal Treatment in Peoria
The sooner you seek treatment for periodontal disease, the greater chance you have of saving your natural teeth. Dr. Christopher J. Couri, DDS, MS is a highly skilled and experienced periodontist serving those in and around the Peoria, IL area.