Periodontal & Gum Health in Pacific Beach, CA
What is Periodontal (Gum) Disease?
Periodontal disease is a condition that attacks and damages the gum tissue inside of the mouth. It develops when food debris, bacteria, and acid accumulate on the teeth into a substance known as plaque. If plaque isn’t removed on a regular basis, it turns into tartar.
Over time, plaque and tartar cause severe harm to the teeth, gums, and underlying jawbone. The first signs of gum disease are subtle, like red gums and bleeding while brushing, but the symptoms become much worse with time:
Chronic bad breath
Infection and pus around the teeth and gums
Receding gum line
In addition to being the leading cause of tooth loss, periodontal disease is associated with other serious health conditions like diabetes, bacterial pneumonia, cardiovascular disease, and increased risk during pregnancy and childbirth.
The good news, however, is that gum disease can be reversed if it’s caught early enough. That’s why it’s so important to visit Altrock & Fabb Dental for periodontal disease treatment.
During your regular six-month check-up, your hygienist in Pacific Beach performs a periodontal examination to check for signs of gum disease. Using a small dental instrument called a periodontal probe, she assesses these key factors:
The space between the teeth and the gums
Amount of bleeding
Tooth mobility and alignment
Presence of plaque and tartar
Based on her findings, your dentist will determine which stage of gum disease currently exists in your mouth:
Gingivitis: The first stage of gum disease that’s easiest to reverse
Periodontitis: The later stage of gum disease that causes infection and bone loss
Advanced Periodontitis: The severe stage of gum disease that causes tooth loss, extensive bone loss, and widespread damage to the mouth
Our team will use this diagnosis to help you begin the best course of treatment.
The team at Altrock & Fabb Dental offers multiple periodontal disease treatment options to best meet your individual needs.
If your gum disease is still categorized as gingivitis, you may only need one to two regular dental cleanings. A professional cleaning removes plaque and bacteria that brushing alone cannot. This removes the substances causing your tender, swollen, bleeding gums and gives your mouth a chance to “reset”.
If your gum disease has advanced into periodontitis, we may recommend scaling and root planing. This specialized periodontal deep cleaning removes all toxins, plaque, and tartar from above and below the gum line. It also smooths rough spots on the surfaces of tooth roots. Scaling and root planing are often combined with medicated mouth rinses and antibiotics to control infection and help the gum tissue heal.