Periodontal disease affects your gum tissue and jaw bone. Studies cited by the American Heart Association indicate it also disrupts systemic health with heart disease, stroke, arthritis, dementia and more. Here at Ogden Dental in Columbia, MO, your dentist, Dr. G. Michael Ogden, detects gum problems and helps his patients manage them. Do you have periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease can be silent
The American Association for Dental Research reports that almost 65 million Americans have some form of gum disease, but unfortunately, many patients aren't aware of the fact. After all, many symptoms go undetected until they have become well-advanced, and infrequent professional care only compounds the problem.
Your dentist tackles this "silent killer" with routine preventive care at Ogden Dental in Columbia. Comprehensive oral examinations and hygienic cleanings, combined with brushing and flossing at home, help prevent gum disease and its destructive symptoms.
How symptoms start
Many people notice nothing for a long time. However, others notice their gums bleed and/or feel tender as they brush or floss. As the disease progresses, other symptoms may include:
- Darkened, puffy gum tissue
- Gum recession
- Bare tooth roots and a "long in the tooh" look
- Changes in dental bite
- Dentures which fit poorly
- Bad breath
- Teeth which feel sensitive to cold, heat, sugar and pressure
- Mobile teeth
- Deep periodontal pockets, the spaces between teeth and gums
As these signs increase, so do the chances for tooth loss. In fact, the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research says that the leading contributor to tooth loss in the United states is gum disease.
What to do
Treating gum disease starts at home with consistent brushing twice a day and daily flossing. These habits remove the plaque and tartar, along with the associated bacteria, which can cause gum disease. If you have mild gingivitis, your gums should respond well to this simple intervention. Combined with a thorough cleaning at Ogden Dental, you can expect healthy gums and a long-lasting smile.
However, if you have more advanced periodontitis, Dr. Ogden may recommend:
- A deep cleaning (in-office tooth scaling) and root planing to remove plaque and tartar from below the gum line and between teeth
- Antibiotic therapy
- Gum and/or bone grafting to replace degraded tissues
- Laser gum tissue therapy which removes the plaque, tartar, and diseased gum tissue and helps seal the soft tissue to tooth surfaces
- Preventing additional problems by receiving more frequent in-office cleanings (periodontal maintenance) and by avoiding tobacco (both cigarettes and chewing tobacco)
Periodontal disease can be managed
Here at our office in Columbia, MO, Dr. G. Michael Ogden and his caring team are ready to help you achieve your healthiest possible smile. For personal answers to questions about your gum health, please call to schedule an appointment with your dentist: (573) 449-7483.