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Gum Disease Treatment: What You Need to Know

Gum Disease Treatment: What You Need to Know

 

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a common but serious condition that can lead to tooth loss if left untreated. At London Dental Arts Clinic in Forest Hill, we are committed to providing comprehensive care to prevent, diagnose, and treat gum disease. Understanding the signs, causes, and treatment options for gum disease is essential for maintaining good oral health.

Understanding Gum Disease

Gum disease starts with the accumulation of plaque, a sticky film of bacteria that forms on your teeth. If not removed through regular brushing and flossing, plaque can harden into tartar, which can only be removed by a dental professional. The two main stages of gum disease are:

  • Gingivitis: This is the early stage of gum disease, characterized by red, swollen gums that may bleed during brushing or flossing. At this stage, the damage can often be reversed with proper oral hygiene and professional cleanings.
  • Periodontitis: If gingivitis is left untreated, it can progress to periodontitis. This advanced stage involves the formation of pockets between the teeth and gums, which can become infected. Periodontitis can lead to the breakdown of the bone that supports the teeth, eventually causing tooth loss.

Causes and Risk Factors

Several factors can contribute to the development of gum disease, including:

  • Poor Oral Hygiene: Inadequate brushing and flossing allow plaque to build up and harden into tartar.
  • Smoking: Tobacco use is a significant risk factor for gum disease.
  • Hormonal Changes: Hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy, menstruation, and menopause can make gums more sensitive and prone to gingivitis.
  • Medical Conditions: Diseases like diabetes can affect the body’s ability to fight infection, increasing the risk of gum disease.
  • Medications: Some medications reduce saliva flow, which helps protect the gums and teeth.
  • Genetics: A family history of gum disease can increase your risk.

Signs and Symptoms

It’s essential to recognize the signs of gum disease early to seek timely treatment. Common symptoms include:

  • Red, swollen, or tender gums
  • Bleeding gums during brushing or flossing
  • Persistent bad breath
  • Receding gums
  • Loose or shifting teeth
  • Pus between the teeth and gums

If you experience any of these symptoms, it’s crucial to schedule an appointment with your dentist promptly.

Treatment Options

At London Dental Arts Clinic, we offer a range of treatments to address gum disease at various stages. These include:

1. Professional Cleaning

For gingivitis, a thorough professional cleaning can remove plaque and tartar from your teeth. This treatment, combined with improved oral hygiene practices at home, can often reverse early gum disease.

2. Scaling and Root Planing

For more advanced gum disease, scaling and root planing (a deep cleaning procedure) may be necessary. This treatment involves removing tartar from above and below the gum line and smoothing rough spots on the tooth root to help the gums reattach to the tooth.

3. Periodontal Surgery

In severe cases of periodontitis, surgical treatments such as flap surgery, bone grafts, or tissue grafts may be required to reduce pocket depth and restore supportive tissues.

4. Antibiotic Therapy

Antibiotics may be prescribed to help control bacterial infection and inflammation in conjunction with other treatments.

Prevention Tips

Preventing gum disease is always better than treating it. Here are some tips to maintain healthy gums:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss daily to remove plaque from between your teeth and under the gum line.
  • Use an antiseptic mouthwash to reduce bacteria in your mouth.
  • Avoid tobacco use in any form.
  • Eat a balanced diet and limit sugary snacks.
  • Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups and professional cleanings.

Gum disease is a serious but preventable condition. By understanding the causes, recognising the symptoms, and seeking timely treatment, you can maintain healthy gums and teeth. At London Dental Arts Clinic, our experienced team is here to help you with all your periodontal needs. If you’re experiencing any signs of gum disease or need a routine check-up, don’t hesitate to contact us today to schedule an appointment. Your oral health is our priority.

Opening Hours

Monday: 9 am – 7 pm

Tuesday: 9 am – 7 pm

Wednesday: 9 am – 7 pm

Thursday: 9 am – 7 pm

Friday – Saturday: 9 am – 5 pm

Sunday: Closed

Location

London Dental Arts
1-3 London Road, Forest Hill
SE23 3TW
United Kingdom

Former Post Code (SE23 3TR)