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Gum Disease & Periodontal Therapy

What Causes Gum Disease?

Our mouths provide a home to millions of bacteria, both beneficial and harmful. Unfortunately, bacteria form a sticky substance, plaque, which adheres to the teeth. However, brushing and flossing aim at removing plaque before it mineralizes into tartar. This is so because tartar becomes a colony for more bacteria and adds to their population, pumping out toxins into the gums.

Gums react to this bacterial invasion with an inflammatory response under the direction of the immune system. Around the base of each tooth, a small collar of gum tissue exists that forms a small crevice or pocket. This warm, dark environment provides a perfect habitat for deeper tartar and bacterial penetration, with their toxins seeping into the base of the collar.

Early inflammation results in bleeding gums, known as gingivitis. Bacteria left untreated and undisturbed successfully create a chronic infection in the gum collar. In many cases, the bone begins to deteriorate around the teeth as the bacteria burrow deeper into the gums. While gums may be slightly tender at this stage, there’s generally minimal discomfort as the bone dissolves.

More than 50% of the bone around your teeth can disappear before any signs of looseness or pain begin to appear. The bone around teeth never regenerates, so this loss becomes permanent and harder to control as the bacteria hide deeper into the gums. Untreated gum disease leads to abscesses and generalized tooth loss in many advanced cases. That’s why it’s essential to discuss gum disease and periodontal therapy with your Aberdeen NJ Dentist, Friendly Dental

Gum Disease Diagnosis

Gum disease diagnosis is determined by the depth of the space that can be measured in millimeters. As follows, Aberdeen Dentists will also consider the texture and shape of your gums, and any movement detectable in each tooth. It's also vital to examine the levels, shape, and density of the bone around your teeth on digital x-rays. By drawing together numerous findings, a clear picture forms about your gum condition. If you've been diagnosed with gum disease, there are a variety of treatment options depending on the severity of the problem. We prefer to start with the least invasive options, which are non-surgical. However, in more serious cases, surgery may be necessary.

Gum Disease Symptoms

Symptoms can include gums that bleed, swollen/red gums, gums that have receded away from the teeth, persistent bad breath or bad taste, pus between your teeth and gums, permanent teeth that are loose or separating, any change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite, any change in the fit of partial dentures. Thus, routine checkups and periodontal examinations are important for maintaining your health. Remember to brush regularly, clean between your teeth, eat a balanced diet, and schedule routine visits.

Gum Disease Treatment

Periodontal disease, commonly known as gum disease, is the most common adult dental affliction. About 75% of the population experiences some level of gum disease, and it's the number one cause of tooth loss in adults. While not curable, it is controllable. As follows, routine dental exams, professional cleanings, and good oral hygiene practices at home are essential to detecting and strategically managing periodontitis. Contact our Abeerdeen Dentists to learn more about gum disease and periodontal therapy.

Maintenance Matters

As with any dental procedure, after-care is vital. In order to keep your teeth in good shape and resist future occurrences of gum disease, you must brush and floss daily, eat a healthy diet, avoid tobacco use, and have routine dental checkups, usually every three to four months. Within just a few hours of a careful cleaning, the bacteria begin to repopulate and adhere to the teeth. Thus, plaque left undisturbed will start to harden and mineralize within 24 hours, making it essential to maintain your oral health.

Managing Gum Disease

Soft Tissue Management has been utilized since the 1980s at Friendly Dental to conservatively treat most periodontal disease without surgery. Mostly this is done with non-surgical treatments such as scaling and root planing combined with lasers and/or antibiotics. In this procedure, an ultrasonic cleaning device and specialized hand instruments are used to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth where regular cleaning devices can’t reach: under the gum line, on the tooth, and around the root. Then, the rough surface of the tooth and the root are smoothed out. This provides a healthy, clean surface that makes it easier for the gum tissue to reattach to the tooth.

If the inflammation has advanced with measurable bone loss, a proactive approach halting the destruction should be strongly considered. Often we will suggest gentle numbing of your gums for your comfort during the deeper cleaning process. One area at a time undergoes meticulous cleaning above and below the gum line, usually over several visits. The infected collar or pocket around each tooth, including the mineralized tartar, must be carefully cleaned out with hand and ultrasonic instruments. Polishing of the teeth to establish glassy surfaces that help repel stain and plaque accumulation usually finishes this initial therapy.

Dr. Gomez & Dr. Homsi may suggest a medicated rinse, an electric toothbrush, a Waterpik, or other specific strategies to help you with your ongoing efforts. Remember, gum disease can be controlled but not cured. Dedicated daily efforts must be consistent to control the disease.

The Mouth-Body Connection

Current research continues to establish clear links between bacterial disease in your mouth and ailments in other parts of the body. Studies show a link between oral bacteria and conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, stroke, arthritis, Alzheimer’s, and certain types of cancers. The integration of oral and general health has never been better understood than it is currently.

Bleeding gums provide a direct pathway into the bloodstream, a journey that toxic oral bacteria can quickly take. In fact, if bleeding gums connected into one single patch, it would create a 2 x 2-inch square. If an open wound of this size existed on your skin, infection would be a concern. Bleeding, infected gums offer this open door to your body and sit saturated in colonies of bacteria. This helps explain why researchers continue to identify oral bacteria deposits in various areas of our bodies.

Diabetes and other auto-immune disorders lower the body’s ability to fight infection, allowing uncontrolled gum disease to advance faster and with more destruction. Research also confirms that the inflammation in the mouth can aggravate diabetes, making it harder to control. This two-way relationship between two chronic conditions emphasizes the importance of optimal oral health.

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Hear From  Our Patients

Our Friendly Dental Care team is committed to providing the very best in dental care in the Aberdeen, NJ area. Please take a moment to read our reviews. 

They live up to the name! I recommend them to everyone! My dental hygienist, Leanne, is personable and professional. I’ll be the first to admit going to the dentist is not my task of choice, but the kind staff at Friendly Dental make it less daunting.
Katrina G.
Dental Cleaning
Thank you for being caring and compassionate, especially since I am extremely terrified of dentists. I wish I could give you more than 5 stars! Staff is great, hygienists are excellent and the dentists are the best. I have recommended my friends and family to this practice and they all the same thing!
Cathleen G.
Routine Dental Care
Friendly Dental has been an extremely positive patient experience for me. I tend to be one of the more difficult patients - despite this my experience with them has been very pleasant. They are very well versed on all of the advanced dental work and scheduling was carefree.
Talwell T.
Routine Dental Care
What a great business, extremely friendly and professional staff. I hadn't been to the dentist in nearly 10 years, and at no point in my visit did I feel ashamed or guilty. They laid out a really nice plan to get my teeth in shape, and to maintain a healthy smile. Highly recommend!
Brendan P.
Deep Dental Cleaning
I highly recommend Friendly Dental! The staff is super kind, knowledgeable, and willing to answer any of your questions. When you’re here you definitely feel like you’re being provided with the best possible care. The office is very clean and it’s really easy to get an appointment that works with your schedule.
Becky B.
Routine Dental Care
I love coming to this office. Dr. Gomez and Dr. Homsi are great at what they do and make me feel as relaxed and comfortable as I can in a dental chair. I look forward to coming here for my cleanings. I always recommend this office to my family and friends. Very welcoming staff as well.
Careen F.
Routine Dental Care