Gum Disease Treatments
Periodontal disease, commonly referred to as gum disease, occurs when plaque and tartar buildup irritates the gums, breaking down the soft tissue and supportive alveolar bone. In the early stages, gingivitis, symptoms are very mild and may remain ignored. Left untreated, gingivitis can develop into the more advanced periodontitis, with much more detrimental effects. If you suspect you are experiencing any amount of gum disease, call Somerset Dental Arts to schedule an appointment today.
Scaling & Root Planing
In the early stages, we may be able to renew oral health for people experiencing gum disease with more frequent periodontal cleanings. Our hygienists will carefully remove plaque and tartar buildup during these hygiene visits to keep your gums healthy and prevent damage from gum disease. If gum disease progresses into the more severe periodontitis, we’ll need to provide more advanced treatments.
Moderate levels of gum disease typically require scaling and root planing. Scaling is the systematic removal of plaque and tartar from the surfaces of teeth around and below the gum line. Once the buildup is removed, we smooth the roots of teeth to make it more difficult for plaque and tartar to reattach to the teeth. When this process is completed, we may also recommend laser therapy to further decontaminate the gum tissue pockets or antibiotic therapy to prevent reinfection.
Soft Tissue Laser
Soft tissue lasers are used to improve the effectiveness of scaling and root planing by precisely targeting bacteria and sterilizing the treatment site. The cauterizing effects of the laser reduce bleeding following scaling and root planing, and accelerate the healing process. We use the laser in addition to handheld tools that remove plaque and smooth root surfaces. The additional laser treatment improves the efficacy of the treatment and reduces the risk for reinfection down the line.
The bacteria that causes gum disease multiplies quickly — sometimes faster than we can provide healing with scaling and root planing alone. In order to keep smiles healthy following gum disease treatment, we may recommend oral or topical antibiotic therapy. The antibiotics limit the amount of bacteria in the mouth, reduce the production of plaque, and decrease the risk for the return or spread of gum disease.