How Can I Prevent and Treat Gum Disease?

June 1, 2021

Gum (periodontal) disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults. This progressive condition often reaches an advanced, destructive stage before a patient realizes there’s a problem. That’s why your trusted team at OliveTree Dentistry emphasizes the prevention, treatment, and management of gum disease. We are all about maintaining healthy gums and confident smiles for a lifetime!

How Does Gum Disease Develop and Progress?

Maintaining poor oral hygiene practices is the primary cause of gum disease. If plaque is not removed by regular brushing and flossing, the bacteria it houses causes irritation and inflammation. That leads to gingivitis, which is characterized by red, swollen, and bleeding gums. The good news is that this early stage of gum disease is usually reversible with meticulous oral hygiene practices and professional treatment. 

If left untreated, gingivitis can potentially progress to a serious condition known as periodontitis. The gums start separating from the teeth, leaving pockets that trap plaque and bacteria, offering the perfect environment for bacteria to flourish. As the condition advances, it destroys the bone and connective tissue supporting the teeth, potentially leading to tooth loss. 

While plaque is usually the cause of gum disease, other contributing factors include smoking, family history, crooked teeth, medical conditions such as diabetes, certain medications, and the aging process. Hormonal changes during pregnancy can also lead to a condition known as pregnancy gingivitis. 

Gum Disease Prevention

The best way to prevent gum disease from developing is to maintain proper oral hygiene practices. Make sure to brush your teeth for two to three minutes at least twice a day with fluoridated toothpaste, floss daily, and rinse with mouthwash to reduce plaque. It’s also essential to consume a healthy, balanced diet to ensure your gums have the nutrients they need to stay healthy. 

One of the most important things you can do for the health of your gums is to visit OliveTree Dentistry for your routine dental care. A dental cleaning is by far the simplest, easiest, and most cost-effective measure you can take to prevent gum disease as well as a host of dental problems. Your dental exams are also necessary because they allow Dr. Koshy to look for signs of early gum disease, which is much easier to treat early on. 

Treating Gum Disease

Treating gum disease starts with a non-surgical deep cleaning known as scaling and root planing. Dr. Koshy and her team are proud to offer scaling using an ultrasonic scaler, which utilizes electromagnetic forces to gently and quickly blast away plaque and tartar deposits. The unit also delivers a stream of water or mouthwash to flush out debris. Meanwhile, the vibrating tip breaks the water into millions of tiny bubbles, creating an environment less hospitable to oral bacteria. Root planing involves cleaning and smoothing out the root surfaces, discouraging any further buildup of tartar and bacteria. 

After a deep cleaning, the gums usually begin to heal and reattach to the healthy, clean surfaces of the teeth. If the gum disease is at an advanced stage, additional treatments, including medications or surgical intervention, may be necessary. 

After treatment, you’ll need periodontal maintenance appointments every three months. During your visits, we’ll clean your teeth, evaluate your gum health, and measure your gum recession and pockets’ depth. Our goal is to ensure the condition does not progress and that your gums and bone stay healthy and sound. 

Gum Disease Treatment in Sunnyvale, TX

Visit OliveTree Dentistry in Sunnyvale, TX, to learn more about the prevention and treatment of gum disease. You can always count on Dr. Koshy and her outstanding team for care and service that exceed your expectations! Call us at 469-248-3455 and schedule your appointment today!

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