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Gum Disease and Deep Cleanings

What is gum and periodontal disease?

When plaque and tartar (calcified bacteria) builds up around the teeth and gums your body produces an immune response which leads to inflammation, halitosis (bad breath), bleeding and tender gums.  This is the start of gum disease and first presents itself as gingivitis. As the gingivitis persists and advances, you will then start to see bone loss around the teeth. This progression is known as periodontal disease. In addition to bleeding, tender gums the outcome is the loss of bone, the loosening of teeth or worse, the loss of your teeth.

How is it diagnosed?

Gum and periodontal disease is diagnosed by a thorough examination of your gums and the surrounding bone and tissue. Dr. Cettie will take a series of radiographs to evaluate for bone loss and then take measurements around each tooth. This will help to determine what type of cleaning is best for you and the prognosis.

What is a Deep Cleaning?

A deep cleaning is also known as scaling and root planing. For patients with gum disease it is important that we remove all bacteria and tartar under your gums and on your teeth. This procedure can take more than one appointment. During your visits, you will be kept comfortable with music, massage chairs, watching Netflix, the use of Nitrous Oxide sedation and very gentle anesthesia.

Perhaps the most important part of a deep cleaning is the maintenance. Returning to Thornton Valley Dental every 3-4 months will allow us to help you keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy. It is also imperative that you keep up with your oral hygiene at home. Dr. Cettie will take time to help educate you on the best ways and tools to keep your teeth clean and address any questions or concerns you may have.  

It is important to remember that your bone and surrounding tissues are the foundation for your teeth. If you are struggling with bleeding, tender gums, bad breath or are worried you may have gum disease, give us a call and let us help get you back on track! 

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