Modern dental techniques have helped many people prevent tooth loss and have a great smile throughout their lifetimes. The care that we receive from our dental professionals makes it seem like our teeth are almost invincible, but there are still many conditions that cannot be reversed, such as periodontal disease, a common problem that can be detected during a routine dental exam.
Periodontal Disease: The Common and Preventable Dental Concern
More than 20 million people each year are told that they have periodontal disease. Most of us are familiar with cavities and perhaps gum disease, but some of us have never heard of periodontal disease. The condition is what occurs after gum disease is not properly treated. You can have gum disease, but not necessarily have periodontal disease. Once you have periodontal disease, you have gum disease and other issues that need attention.
Symptoms of Periodontal Disease
Your hygienist checks for signs of periodontal disease during each exam. A special probe is used to take measurements at four points around each tooth to include both the tongue side and cheek side. These measurements reflect the depth of pockets around the tooth. The higher the number, the deeper the pocket. Ideally, your teeth should have very shallow pockets. As periodontal disease progresses, the pockets get deeper, and this means that bacteria have access to your bone. Bacteria erodes bone, and this leads to tooth loss in the most severe cases.
Treating Periodontal Disease
When your dentist reviews your x-rays, there may be areas where the bone is eroded. This is a sign of periodontal disease, and the remaining bone needs to be preserved. A deep cleaning below the gum line, known as scaling and root planning, removes bacteria and plaque from the roots of your teeth. This procedure is much more extensive than a normal cleaning, but it is necessary to prevent further bone loss. Your gums may need to be number for the procedure.
Learn More About Periodontal Disease. Contact Gallery 57 Dental.
To learn more about periodontal disease, emergency dental treatments, teeth whitening and our other services, contact Gallery 57 Dental to schedule an appointment. Our office is located on West 57th Street in New York, and you can contact us at 212.246.8700.