Periodontal disease is an inflammation or infection in the mouth, which affects our gums and bone subjacent to our teeth. Nowadays this disease is the number one cause of tooth loss.
Generally, it is painless, thus going unnoticed by most who suffer from this disease, until it reaches a highly advanced stage. Therefore, it is imperative to consult our dentist if you have any of the following symptoms.
1. Symptoms of periodontal disease
- Bleeding gums: This can occur when brushing your teeth or even spontaneously and is one of the most common early signs. This alerts us immediately that something is not right, because healthy gums should not bleed.
- Gum retraction: with exposure of tooth root.
- Appearance of spaces between teeth.
- Gums that detach from teeth.
- Tooth mobility or displacement
- Abscess appearance with pain: this is indicative of a more advanced stage of periodontal disease, and requires surgical or even regenerative treatment.
- Bad breathe.
2. Specialties on periodontics
- Scaling and root planning of dental roots is a sub-gingival cleaning to remove the dental calculus, bacteria and microorganisms that destroy the bone supporting our teeth.
- Gum graft is a segment of gum harvested from the palate and placed where there is a gingival retraction. This way we have a treatment that solves different problems regarding aesthetics and dental health.
- Bone regeneration, as the name suggests, is restoring bone where there is a lack of it, due to its loss over time.
- Another specialty in periodontics relates to certain techniques that allow us to perform, with a simple intervention, a crown lengthening involving short teeth.
3. Frequently asked questions about periodontics
Advises in order to keep our gums healthy: Brush your teeth after each meal and floss or the use of an interdental brush. Visit your dentist every 6 months.
Duration of the toothbrush: If it is a quality brush and used properly, it can last up to 3 or 4 months.
4. Gum graft
What is a gum graft?
A gum graft is indicated in clinical situations in which teeth show their roots, due to gingival retraction. In most cases, it is necessary to harvest a section of gingiva from the palate and apply it on the area we intend to cover up.
It is a procedure with excellent post operatory results and where there is hardly no post operatory pain.
Gum graft objective:
By covering of the root´s exposed surface, we obtain multiple objectives:
- Protects the tooth with a new adhered gum, thus isolating the root from the exterior.
- Prevents gum retraction from increasing and thus becoming more pronounced.
- Reduces or eliminates excessive tooth sensitivity.
- Improve the aesthetic appearance.
Can easily manifest itself and is reversible when treated properly. It only affects the gingiva.
Visible signs: slightly inflamed gums and bleeds when brushing our teeth.
How to treat it? With a professional elimination of accumulated and hardened dental plaque. This procedure is called root scaling and planning.
The progression of gingivitis to a more severe stage of involvement is called periodontitis. With this clinical situation, it is necessary a periodontal intervention and preferably performed by a periodontist (a dentist specialized in periodontics)
How to treat it? The basis of this procedure is the same as in the case with gingivitis, which is to eliminate the accumulated dental plaque and calculus and varying the technique, depending on the difficulty to access the contaminated area.
7. Bone regeneration
When necessary we can perform regenerative techniques in order to recover areas of lost bone.
When the patient`s anatomic conditions are favourable, bio conductive materials with growth factors are used, thus allowing to regenerate bone with great satisfactory results.
8. Dental crown enlargement
An attractive smile has to present a proper ratio between teeth, gums, and lips. These three smile components must be in perfect harmony.
Some people suffer a change in the desired proportion between teeth and gums, or a gingival margin asymmetry. The clinical term a gummy smile, refers to when we show more than 3 mm of our gingiva while smiling.
When we find ourselves with shortened teeth, usually square, resulting from excess gum covering the surface of the tooth´s crown, the procedure for a dental crown enlargement involves the removal of the excess gingiva (gingivectomy).
With this treatment we are able to restore the teeth´s original height and thus a harmonious smile. The results are immediate.