One thing you will never want to be told at your dental check up is that you have gum disease. Being diagnosed with gum or periodontal disease can impact a person’s overall health if left untreated and become a much bigger problem. For this reason regular check ups are important for preventing gum disease or at the very least early intervention and less invasive treatment options. Once you are diagnosed with gum disease your Vancouver children’s dentist will need to use procedures other that regular cleaning to treat the disease. In the early stages most treatment involves non surgical procedures however in more advanced cases surgical procedures are often required. The following explains each procedure and what it involves.
Non surgical procedures
While a regular cleaning is for the visible portion of the teeth, scaling and planing are required to deal with gum disease. Scaling and root planing is a special procedure that removes plaque and tartar ( also known as calculus) from under the gum line in periodontal pockets. This smooths out the root surfaces to promote healing and a scaling is the only way to remove calculus from this area.
In some cases antibiotics and antimicrobials may be used in conjunction with scaling and root planing procedures. If diagnosed early most cases respond to scaling and root planing along with continued daily cleaning and result in reversing gum disease.
Periodontal maintenance/ supportive periodontal therapy Following scaling and root planing specialized deep cleaning can minimize the recurrence or progression of gum disease.
Pocket depth reduction procedures This involves the dentist opening up the affected gum tissue to remove disease causing bacteria ( calculus ) build up. In some cases smoothing and recontouring of the damaged bone is necessary. This procedure allows the gum tissue to reattach to healthy bone during the healing process. What also happens is the gum tissue is repositioned making it easier to keep clean.
Rejuvenation The dentist will treat the affected area in the same manner as a pocket reduction procedure. Additionally a procedure using membranes, bone grafts or tissue stimulating proteins to stimulate the body’s ability to regenerate healthy bone and gum tissue.
Soft tissue grafts This procedure involves surgical removal of healthy gum tissue from the palate or roof of your mouth or other area of your mouth. The tissue is then used to repair receding gums and cover exposed root surfaces.
If you feel as I do that any of these procedures to reverse gum disease sound extreme it may be a good time to schedule a checkup with a pediatric dentist in Vancouver.