“Periodontal” means “around the tooth” so periodontal disease affects the area around your tooth. Periodontal disease is also known as gum disease. It’s a common disease in which inflammation and affects the gums, bone, and tissue around a tooth.
Gingivitis can be a common indicator of an early stage of periodontal disease. Gingivitis is a bacterial infection in the gum tissue, usually caused by plaque irritating and inflaming the gums. The more severe the bacteria infection gets, the harder it becomes to remove and treat the infection. Bacteria starts to colonize the gum pockets in between your teeth, and periodontal disease starts to progress, destroying the tissue and jawbone. Loose teeth, tooth loss, and shifting or moving teeth can all come from untreated periodontal disease.
Periodontal disease is the main cause of tooth loss in adults. If you think you might be experiencing any symptoms of periodontal disease, schedule an appointment with our Raleigh dentist to get treatment as soon as possible.
Types of Periodontal Disease
Gingivitis that goes untreated can start spreading to the gums, and even below the gum line. When the toxins in plaque start irritating the gums, an inflammatory response causes your body to start breaking down and destroying its own bone and soft tissue. In the early stages of gum disease, your teeth separate from the infected gum tissue, and you may experience no symptoms, or only mild symptoms during this process. If the pockets between the teeth and gums deepen, this is usually a sign that you have periodontal disease.
Some of the most common types of periodontal disease are:
The tissue supporting your teeth is inflamed and gums start to recede. Your teeth might look like they are getting longer, but in reality, your gums are receding. Chronic periodontitis is the most common form of gum disease. Progression starts with loss of attachments and may also go through periods of quick progression.
Aggressive periodontitis progresses quickly with loss of gum attachment, chronic bone destruction, and familial aggregation. Healthy individuals are commonly affected by this type of periodontal disease.
This type of gum disease most commonly affects individuals with systemic conditions such as HIV, immunosuppression, and malnutrition. Necrosis, or death of the tissue, occurs in the periodontal ligament, alveolar bone, and gingival tissues.
Periodontitis Caused by Systemic Disease
This form of gum disease is common in patients at an early age. Respiratory disease, heart conditions, and diabetes can all contribute to this form of periodontal disease.
Treatment for Periodontal Disease in Raleigh
Periodontal disease has many treatments, both surgical and non-surgical. Depending on your type of periodontitis, and condition of your teeth and gums, our Raleigh dentist will recommend the best and most comfortable treatment for you, and discuss what your treatment will entail before any procedure is performed.
Here are some of the more common treatments for periodontal disease:
- Tooth scaling and planing of the roots – removing the bacteria and tartar on the tooth is essential for preserving the health of your gum tissue. Our Raleigh dentist will clean your teeth and gum pockets and treat them with antibiotics for the infection if necessary. You may be prescribed a special mouthwash to use daily.
- Regeneration of the tissue – In order to encourage and help the regrowth of any destroyed tissue, Dr. Schmorr may insert a special membrane into damaged areas.
- Pocket eliminating surgery – This surgical treatment, also called flap surgery, reduces the size of the pockets between your gums and teeth. Jawbone surgery also an option for eliminating bone indentations and bacteria colonization.
- Dental implants – dental implants are a common way to improve the look and functionality of your mouth when you’ve suffered tooth loss from periodontal disease. Dr. Schmorr can insert a prosthetic tooth or teeth into the jawbone to restore your teeth back to original form. Dental implants may require tissue regeneration before they can be placed.