At Keshavarz Dental Office in Brampton, we believe that preventing potential dental issues before they become problematic is better than treating them. And this is our goal as dentists. But to what extent can we protect ourselves from gum disease, gum recession, and other related issues? Read on to learn more.
What is Gum Disease, and How do You Treat It?
Gum disease, or periodontal disease, requires periodontal care and treatment. In most cases, treatment is done by a periodontist, a dental practitioner who specializes in caring for the gums and bones in your jaw that support and keep your teeth in place.
The stages of gum disease include:
- Periodontitis and
- Advanced periodontitis.
Have You Been Referred for Periodontal Treatment?
If you have periodontal disease, you’re not alone. More than half of Canadians will develop periodontal disease throughout their lifetime.
DYK: According to The Canadian Dental Association, “Seven out of 10 Canadians will develop gum disease. It is the most common dental problem and can progress pain-free until you have a real problem.”
Common reasons your dentist may refer you to a periodontist for treatment usually include a case of moderate or severe level of periodontal disease, with such symptoms as:
- Bleeding, swollen or receding gums.
- Loose teeth.
- A change in your bite (how your upper and lower teeth connect).
- Pain or discomfort within, around or underneath your gums.
- You have a personal or family history of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, respiratory disease, osteoporosis, or cancer.
- You’re a smoker, which increases your risk of getting advanced disease.
Common Treatments for Advanced Cases of Gum Disease:
- Gum recession
- Gingival graft
Gum recession, gingival grafts, and frenectomies are all related to periodontal (gum) health and treatments.
- Gum Recession: A condition where the margin of the gum tissue surrounding the teeth erodes or pulls back, exposing more of the tooth or root. Gum recession may result in tooth sensitivity and, if left untreated, may cause tooth loss. It’s often a result of periodontal diseases, aggressive tooth brushing, or genetic predisposition can also cause it.
- Gingival Graft: It treats gum recession, also known as gum grafting or gum graft surgery. There are several types of gum grafts, but most tend to involve taking tissue from one part of the mouth and reattaching it to the area where the gums have receded, thus reducing ongoing gum recession, covering exposed roots, and improving the gum line’s appearance. Gum graft surgery requires that your periodontist use tissue from your palate or other donor source to cover the exposed root. It can be performed on one or multiple teeth and may reduce tooth sensitivity and improve the aesthetics of your smile.
- Frenectomy: A minor surgery involving the removal or modification of the frenum, a small fold of tissue preventing an organ in the body from moving too far. A frenectomy might be needed in the mouth if the frenum pulls the gums away from the teeth, contributing to gum recession. It is often done with other periodontal procedures, such as gingival grafts if the frenum worsens gum recession issues.
It’s essential to consult a dental professional, such as a periodontist, to decide the best course for these conditions. They can supply a thorough examination and recommend proper treatment options based on your gums and teeth’ specific needs and conditions.
Regular dental exams with your general dentist can help prevent gum disease by finding and treating the early stages before it becomes a severe issue. An appointment with a trusted periodontist is also recommended if your gums require treatment or surgery.
If you need periodontal care, you’re well cared for by Dr. David Leung, our resident in-house periodontist. Dr. Leung has a periodontics, prosthodontics, and orthodontics background and is also a clinical instructor at the University of Toronto.
Yours in Excellent Oral Health,
Dr. F. Keshavarz Dentistry in Brampton.