Treatments for gum disease will depend on the severity of your symptoms. Your dental care professional will examine your teeth and gums and access the best way to prevent further damage and to treat the symptoms that you present with. Treatments for gum disease may include non-surgical treatments, periodontal surgery, laser therapy, dental implants and also cosmetic procedures.
There are AAP guidelines that dictate that gum disease should be treated in the least invasive manner possible for the comfort and cost-effective considerations of the patient. Non-surgical procedures are the least invasive for the patient.
Scaling and root planing (careful cleaning fo the root surfaces to remove plaque and tartar from the deep pockets) are two non-surgical treatments.
After these two procedures dental patients will require ongoing maintenance to help prevent the reoccurrence of gum disease.
Non-surgical treatment does not always accomplish its goals and surgery may be needed.
Periodontal Surgery Procedures:
This is usually done when your dental professional determines that the gum tissue is unhealthy and cannot be repaired with non-surgical treatment.
There are four common surgical procedures performed to care for patients.
- Pocket Reduction
Soft Tissue Grafts
Lasers may be used along with scaling and root planing to improve the effectiveness of these procedures. When lasers are used during dental procedures less bleeding may occur as well as a decreased occurrence of swelling and discomfort. Lasers must be used with care as additional damage can be caused to the tissue if improper wave length or power level is used.
Insurance companies pay for the procedure being performed and not the devices being used so choosing to use Laser treatment should not have a bearing on your insurance coverage.
This is a permanent tooth replacement option for those who have experienced tooth loss due to gum disease. Dental implants are artificial teeth that are placed into the jaw in order to hold in place, replacement teeth or dental bridge. Dental implants do not rely on neighboring teeth for support. They are natural looking and feeling. Dental implants can bring back your confidence and have you smiling again. Dental implants can also improve the ability to chew and speak.
Not only can cosmetic procedures improve the appearance, it may improve function as well.
Cosmetic procedures include:
- Crown Lengthening – This is done to improve the esthetics of the gum line and to also lay down the groundwork for restorative dentistry.
Ridge Augmentation – This is used to fill in places of unnatural looking gaps or indentations caused by the jawbone receding due to tooth loss. Ridge Augmentation creates a more natural looking and easier to clean contour of your gums and jaw.
Soft Tissue Grafts – Gum disease often causes gum recession. These exposed roots can be sensitive to cold foods and hot or cold liquids. The grafts are made from tissue taken from your palate or another donor source and used to cover the exposed root. Grafts can be done for one tooth or several of your teeth. Grafts also even out your gum line.