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 Periodontics ( Gum Treatment )

Periodontal (gum) disease is one of the main causes of the loss of teeth in adults.  It can result from poor dental care, but can also be related to other factors including age, smoking, diabetes, genetics, hormonal changes, medications, poor nutrition and clenching and grinding teeth. 
It's not just about your teeth anymore.  Studies have shown a strong link between periodontal disease and an increased risk for:

  • heart disease
  • diabetes
  • stroke
  • osteoporosis
  • pre-term or low birth weight babies

In our role of a gum treatment specialist, we will take care of this problem for you by offering and prescribing gum disease treatment options.
Periodontal disease is often painless and symptom-free. Many a times patients are unaware that they are suffering from this disease or that they do not consider it serious enough to warrant a doctor’s attention. But sadly so, they are mistaken as they realize it later on in their life. The warning signs may include:  

  • gums that bleed easily
  • red, swollen, tender gums
  • gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • persistent bad breath or bad taste
  • 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
  • formation of gaps or spaces between teeth where it never existed earlier

Schedule an appointment right away if you experience any of these warning signs.
Early diagnosis and treatment are important to controlling periodontal disease. Bleeding gums are usually the first sign of a problem, but we have other ways to diagnose the disease including:
Probing Depth – We gently place a tiny measuring instrument called a periodontal probe under the free edge of the gum to determine the pocket depth. In a healthy condition, numbers measure from one to three millimeters. Anything over four millimeters is usually not considered healthy.  Bigger numbers usually indicate pockets of infection that must be treated. Recording the numbers helps us determine how many sites of infection a patient has as well as the severity of the disease.
 Bone Loss – We use x-rays to visualize bone loss and determine which stage of periodontal disease a patient has and whether or not it is reversible.

Gum treatment involves simple procedures like Scaling & Root Planing to surgical procedures like Periodontal Flap Surgery, Gingivectomy, Bone Grafting, Gingival Depigmentation, Gingival Recession Treatment, etc. amongst others. If a patient has a serious case of periodontal (gum) disease then some form of surgical methods are usually employed to treat the patient.

 

Scaling  & Root Planing

Nobody plans on getting gum disease, but it happens to most of the population! In fact, like cavities, gum disease is caused by a buildup of dental plaque bacteria, resulting in dental calculus, or dental tartar. Over time, dental plaque and its cohorts will creep beneath the gum line, forming "pockets" between the teeth and gums. The larger these pockets grow, the worse the gum disease gets. This procedure is done to remove excess plaque and bacteria that has formed on the teeth and around the gum line. Using an ultrasonic scaler, periodontal hand scalers, or curettes, a dentist will carefully scrape along the visible surface of the tooth, which removes any plaque and also helps to smooth the tooth surface so it is more resistant to build up in the future.

 

Subgingival Curettage

This procedure involves the debridement of an ulcerated epithelial attachment and subjacent gingival connective tissue to eliminate inflammation, thereby, leading to shrinkage and restoration of gingival tissue health. The removal of the inflamed tissue wall of a periodontal pocket (area surrounding a tooth) is done with a curette (a spoon-shaped instrument for removing material from the wall of a cavity or other surface).

 

Periodontal Flap Surgery

Periodontal flap surgery is a procedure wherein, gum is separated from the teeth to create a “flap”. This allows the surgeon to access the infected pockets that were inaccessible previously and clean the area thoroughly up to the level of the bone. In totality, periodontal flap surgery tries to reduce the pocket depth and also helps to maintain the remaining pockets clean.

Before

After

 

Gum Recession Treatment (Root Coverage Procedures For Gingival Recession) By Alloderm Grafting

Recession of the gums from the tooth surface results in exposure of the tooth’s root thereby, making it look unaesthetic. Besides this it even leads to tooth sensitivity, root caries (cavities) and might in the future result in loss of the tooth too.
For the treatment of gum recession a graft is usually taken from the palate and transplanted onto the affected area. But this results in a second site of surgery being involved and also the predictability of the graft being taken up depends a lot on the thickness of the graft tissue harvested. With the advancements in the dental sciences, these days we have treated skin graft tissues of other human donors (Alloderm) or membranes from other sources (Bio Gide) available to bring about predictable gum recession coverage without the drawback of causing a second site of surgery too!!  The graft reinforces the thin gum and makes it difficult for the gum to recede further and may even help to cover the exposed root. The coverage of the root would thereby reduce tooth sensitivity, reduce the chances of root caries and even improve the esthetics of your smile.

  

 

Bone Grafting (Periodontal Regeneration)

A regenerative procedure is often recommended when the bone supporting your teeth has been destroyed. It is possible to reverse some of the damage by regenerating lost bone and tissue. The gum tissue is folded back and the bacterium which is causing the disease is removed. Guided tissue regeneration (GTR) membranes (filters), bone grafts or tissue-stimulating proteins can then be used to encourage your body's natural ability to regenerate bone and tissue. There are many methods which will enhance support for your teeth and help to restore your bone to a healthy level. With thorough daily oral hygiene and professional maintenance care, the chances of keeping your natural teeth will be increased.
The available bone grafts can be of different types depending upon the source of origin viz. autografts (person’s own bone), allograft (another human’s bone), xenograft (animal source) and alloplasts (synthetic bone graft e.g. polymers, etc.). The different bone grafts have different bone forming potential for which our periodontists will guide you.

     

 

Gummy smile treatment

Most people with gummy smiles feel embarrassed in social situations as they stress over who’s focusing on their large gum line.
Periodontists have made things easier. You can achieve your desired smile by procedures that do not involve extensive surgery or lots of pain. When you’re ready to make-over your smile, schedule a consultation with us dentist to discuss your dream smile and your concerns.
To get a healthy, attractive smile, techniques such as gingivectomy and crown lengthening are used. Sometimes restorative procedures may also be used as an adjunct for better effects.

 

Gingivectomy

Gingivectomy is needed when there is an excessive amount of gum growth that has occurred around the teeth. This might occur as a result of poor oral hygiene over a prolonged period of time, due to some medications viz. dilantin sodium, nifedipine, cyclosporine, etc. or due to hereditary predilection. Due to the gingival overgrowth, a person cannot keep his teeth clean because of the formation of false pockets. Gingivectomy arrests this problem, thereby helping a patient to maintain clean teeth and thus avoid gum problems. Ginigivectomy is also done for situations where the patient has a gummy smile or in cases where the third molars are covered by a pericoronal flap.
It can be done with the help of a surgical knife or by using an electrosurgery unit with a specially designed electrical cutting tip. The electrosurgery unit uses electricity to cut the gum tissues and at the same time, causes the gum tissues to clot and stop bleeding.

     

 

Crown Lengthening

The procedure involves adjusting the levels of the gum tissue and bone around the tooth in question, to create a new gum-to–tooth relationship. This allows us to reach the edge of the restoration, ensuring a proper fit to the tooth. It also helps us in providing enough tooth structure for the retention and stabilization of new crowns & bridges so that they do not come loose easily in the future.  The procedure enables an individual to be able to clean the edge of the restoration while brushing and flossing to prevent decay and gum disease.
 

 

Mobile Teeth (Splinting)

Looseness, mobility or mobile teeth is caused by diseases of the periodontium and includes the tissues surrounding the teeth which are the gingiva, the bone supporting the teeth and the fibrous attachment between the bone and teeth. In some case the mobility of teeth can be reduced by bringing about regeneration of the lost periodontal structures by surgical procedures such as bone grafting. In other cases, where regeneration is not possible, we splint the mobile teeth together thereby making them more favorable to sustain the forces of chewing.

Before

After

 
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