PERIODONTAL THERAPY

Stop Periodontal Disease in Its Tracks

If you have been diagnosed with and treated for periodontal disease (an advanced form of gum disease), regularly scheduled supportive therapy is vitally important to your success in the management of disease progression. According to the American Academy of Periodontology, “Following a course of active periodontal treatment and periodic ongoing care at regularly prescribed intervals is essential. Because periodontal disease or infection can recur, continuous maintenance is absolutely necessary to prevent this periodontal infection from becoming active once again, destroying what healing has occurred.”

Periodontal disease can wreak havoc on your gums. More frequent visits are needed to keep the bacteria that cause periodontal disease in check.

A periodontal maintenance appointment typically looks like this…

  • Evaluation of oral health to detect subtle signs of disease recurrence
  • Appropriate debridement of teeth and gums (professional cleaning and polishing)
  • Antimicrobial therapy to destroy difficult-to-reach bacteria, as deemed necessary by the doctor
  • Evaluation of home-care regimes and aids
  • Oral health evaluation, including oral cancer screening, necessary dental films, and decay detection
  • Recommendations based on individual needs as a result of medical and dental histories review

Scientific studies support the belief of experts that the most important aspect of periodontal treatment is long-term maintenance therapy. Individuals vary in their response to periodontal disease, and their resistance to the disease varies at different times of life. When periodontal disease recurs following treatment, it may do so without signs or symptoms to the patient. Dr. Harrison and her team of periodontal therapists are well trained in recognizing the very subtle signs that may signal detrimental changes. Ask Dr. Harrison and your hygienist what interval of care would be in your best interest for optimal, lifelong oral health.

“My experience was professional and I have no complaints. I was in for a teeth cleaning and all involved did their best to make it a positive experience for me. I would highly recommend Millennium Dental.”

• HARVEY J.

FAQs About Periodontal Disease

Q: Why do my gums bleed?
Gums affected by periodontal disease become red and inflamed, often bleeding during brushing or flossing. Timely treatment can reverse these conditions, however, if these conditions are ignored, your periodontal disease can worsen, becoming a condition called periodontitis. Periodontitis is much more difficult to treat. Periodontitis affects your gums, bone, and teeth in a manner that cannot be reversed. To prevent tooth loss, you may require more extensive, specialized treatment from your general dentist or even from a periodontist. If left untreated, periodontitis results in tooth loss – teeth either fall out on their own or must be extracted. If you don’t diagnose and treat periodontitis in its early stages, you may require extensive surgery to save your teeth, putting yourself at risk for other serious health problems.
Q: What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease is an advanced form of gum disease that affects the supportive tissues around the teeth and eventually the teeth. The bacteria found in active periodontal infections are the same bacteria associated with a wide variety of illnesses from chronic pneumonia to out-of-control diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and more. Periodontal disease is also the leading cause of tooth loss for adults living in the United States.
Q: Is periodontitis that harmful?
Aside from the damage it can do to your teeth, gums, bone, and soft tissues, it causes systemic inflammation. Chronic inflammation has been linked to numerous diseases ranging from autoimmune disorders to cancer and beyond. Periodontal disease takes a toll on your oral and overall health, and advanced periodontitis damage is not reversible. The best plan of treatment is to treat it early before it reaches the advanced stages. Once it has reached advanced stages, a more aggressive treatment plan is needed to move toward healing.
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