Perio disease, commonly referred to as gum disease, can result in the loss of your teeth and bone loss in the jaw, along with a host of secondary infections. There are several non-surgical options available to treat perio disease. The following guide can help you decide if one of these is right for you.
Option #1: Thorough Cleaning
A thorough perio cleaning requires both scaling and root planing. The periodontist will remove all plaque and calculus buildup from the teeth surfaces in a process called scaling. They will then reach beneath the gum line with special tools to scrape any buildup or bacterial colonies off the roots. This is root planing. Depending on the amount of calculus, the procedure may be done all at once or in multiple sessions. While surgery isn't involved, your periodontist may use a local anesthetic to make you more comfortable.
This thorough cleaning removes the source of the perio infection so that your gums can begin healing. Nearly all perio patients will undergo this treatment option unless they decide to simply have the teeth pulled and replaced with dentures or implants.
Option #2: Pocket Treatments
The space that develops between your teeth and gums due to perio disease is called a pocket. This is where the bacterial colonies that eat away at gum tissue and your jaw bone thrive. Your periodontist can use a special syringe to fill these pockets with an anti-bacterial and anti-microbial agent, which will destroy the bacteria so that healing can begin.
This option is a good choice during the early stages of perio disease when the gums are mainly all that is affected. This is when the bacteria are becoming established, but major damage has yet to occur in the teeth or bone.
Option #3: Tray Methods
Tray treatments, like Perio Protect, are very similar to pocket treatments. The difference is that you can continue the treatment at home, so you won't need to visit the periodontist as often and you can treat your perio disease more regularly. A tray is made to custom fit to your teeth and gums. You then place the treatment solution in the tray and wear the tray over your teeth for the amount of time prescribed by the periodontist.
This option is a good one for those that are able to practice consistent dental hygiene at home. If you are in the beginning or middle stages of perio disease, which means that you may have some bone loss but not major tooth loss, this can help slow or halt the continued progression and help save your teeth. To find out more, contact someone like Hurst Family Dental.