Are you dealing with gum recession and gum disease? According to the NIH, about 80% of adults in the United States have gum disease. Unfortunately, gum disease and gum recession not only look displeasing, but they can also lead to advanced dental problems and tooth loss. Prolonged gum disease can even impact your overall health, causing heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and more.
With that said, treating your gum disease and recession could not only save your teeth, but it could also preserve your overall health. The most common treatment for gum recession is gum grafting, a surgical technique that requires removing gum from the roof of your mouth and stitching it over the recessed area. Gum grafting can be painful, and it can have a long recovery time.
At Kent Burnett, DDS, we help patients avoid gum recession and diminish their gum disease by offering scaling and root planing, a non-surgical treatment for gum disease.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease begins when bacteria collects around the teeth, forming a layer of biofilm called plaque. When plaque remains on the teeth, it causes inflammation in the neighboring gum tissue. This inflammation is an early form of gum disease called gingivitis.
Early gum disease is easy to treat by flossing daily and brushing twice a day, as well as visiting your dentist once every six months. When gingivitis goes untreated, it leads to a more advanced form of gum disease known as periodontal disease.
Periodontal disease occurs when the structure around the the teeth becomes infected. Periodontal disease can lead to gum recession, tooth decay, tooth loss, and more.
Why Do Gums Recede?
When patients fail to remove infection and plaque in their early stages, plaque begins to accumulate and infiltrate the gum line. When bacteria spreads below the gum line, they create periodontal pockets.
As the bacteria continues to reside in the periodontal pocket, they release by-products that destroy the gum tissue, causing the gums to recede and creating deeper periodontal pockets. Unfortunately, once the gums have receded, they cannot heal naturally.
Gum recession is not only unsightly, but leaving it untreated can cause tooth loss. If we notice that you’re experiencing advanced gum disease and recession, we might recommend scaling and root planing, a minimally invasive technique to rehabilitate your gums and save your smile.
What is Scaling and Root Planing?
Scaling and root planing, sometimes referred to as non-surgical periodontal therapy or deep cleaning, is a treatment used to defend against gum disease and gum recession. While scaling and root planing is a minimally invasive treatment, sometimes it requires local anesthetic for patients with sensitive gums.
During scaling and root planings, we scale away all of the bacteria and tartar deposits on the tooth, working our way under the gum line to plane out tartar on the tooth root under the gumline. Smoothing out the area of the tooth root under the gumline removes abrasive bacteria, promoting your gums to heal and reattach to the tooth.
Similar to how you're supposed to brush your teeth, scaling and root planing process is carried out in quadrants, the upper right quadrant, upper left, lower right, and lower left. Depending on the condition of your gum health, we might recommend scaling and rooting in one or all of the quadrants. If you have advanced gum disease, it might take multiple appointment to rehabilitate your mouth.
After Scaling and Root Planing
Preventing Gum Disease from Redeveloping After Scaling & Root Planing
One of the best ways to stay on top of your gum health is through regular checkups and periodontal exams. Between checkups, there are a number of ways you can take care of your gum health at home:
Floss at least once daily to clean the areas between the teeth where bacteria collects.
Use an antimicrobial mouthwash and toothpaste to kill bacteria.
Replace your toothbrush every 3 months or when the bristles are worn down.
If you use tobacco products, you should try to quit immediately.
Make sure you’re using proper brushing and flossing techniques.
Adjusting your diet to cut out high sugar foods and carbohydrates can also help promote good gum health.
Schedule an Appointment at Kent Burnett, DDS in Corvallis, OR
Are you dealing with gum disease? Put a stop to your gum disease with minimally invasive scaling and root planing therapy. Schedule an appointment with Kent Burnett, DDS in Corvallis, OR for a deep cleaning at 541-588-1100.
Initial Visit & Forms
As a convenience to our patients, all the necessary forms are available to be downloaded, filled out either as a fillable PDF or printed and completed by hand. Either way you will save time at your initial visit by bringing the completed forms to your initial visit, along with a list of any medications you are currently taking.