Periodontics involves the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease.
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is an inflammation and infection of the gum tissues. It includes the stages commonly known as gingivitis and periodontitis. Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults.
When plaque and tartar are left untreated on teeth and gums, gum disease may develop. You can reduce your risk of gum disease by brushing twice and flossing once every day. You should also have a dental exam and professional cleaning at least twice each year.
Gingivitis includes a variety mild to moderate symptoms, such as:
- Red, swollen gums
- Sensitive teeth
- Gums bleeding from normal brushing or eating
- Chronic halitosis (bad breath)
- Difficulty or pain chewing
Periodontitis is a more advanced form of gum disease. In this case, gums begin to pull away from teeth, creating small “pockets” along the gum line. Tooth loss, bone loss, and damage to gums and soft tissues can occur with periodontitis.
The most common treatment for gum disease is known as periodontal therapy/scaling and root planing. Our hygienist can perform this gentle and effective removal of tartar, calculus, and infected tissue.
Common risk factors for gum disease include poor oral hygiene habits, diabetes, smoking, and hormonal changes. Some medications can also increase your likelihood of developing gum disease. Many recent studies have found that untreated gum disease negatively impacts other aspects of your overall health. This is especially common for patients with cardiovascular disease or diabetes.
Contact Riley Dental Associates of Central Virginia for a consultation and screening today.