Periodontal Disease Therapy in Ocala, FL
A recent study reported that nearly half of Americans suffer from some form of gum disease. If you live in Ocala or surrounding communities and have any of the signs or symptoms listed below, we would be more than happy to provide a consultation regarding the state of your gum tissues.
Do your gums ever bleed when brushing or flossing? Are your teeth and gums very sensitive? Are your gums ever swollen, red, or sore? Do you have bad breath? Many people have these signs and do not know the reason. These indicators could mean that you have gingivitis. You’ve probably heard it referred to as gum disease.
Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease is a progressive disease where bacteria migrate below the gum line and destroy the anchoring effect of the gum on the attached tooth.
What are the Types of Gum Disease?
Gum disease has two major variations. First, gingivitis is the beginning stages of gum disease. It is essentially an infection below the gumline. It is characterized in part by red, swollen, or painful gums that can bleed easily when brushing. At this stage, the gum disease is completely reversible.
As gum disease progresses, it can turn into periodontitis. Periodontitis is the continuation of this chronic infection. In contrast to gingivitis, periodontitis begins to destroy the structures that support the tooth including the bone. In addition, periodontitis is not reversible. That said, it is important to remedy gum disease before it progresses to this point.
What are the Dangers of Gum Disease?
The mouth is a complex environment. Immediately following a dental cleaning that complex environment begins to change. Those changes can have negative effects on the oral cavity if the proper precautions are not taken. Plaque accumulation can be a major problem in the mouth. Plaque is essentially a film that accumulates from many different types of bacteria and their products. The presence of plaque makes the oral environment more acidic and one that is more conducive to the existence of “bad” bacteria. These changes in the environment can cause gingivitis, which is an inflammation of the gums.
In addition to the loss of teeth, gum disease can create systemic problems. There have been numerous studies that show the link between gum disease and heart disease. It is important for you to see your dentist if you think you may have gingivitis. Neglecting to do so can be costly and dangerous. The following statistics are incredible:
- Heart attack- If you have gingivitis you are two times as likely to develop coronary heart disease and it is 2.6 times more likely that your cardiovascular disease will prove to be fatal.
- Stroke- Men who have had gum disease have double the risk of ischemic (oxygen deprived) stroke than those who do not.
- Diabetes- The International Federation of Diabetes claims that controlling periodontal disease is one of the most effective ways to help keep blood sugar in a safe range. In addition, patients with diabetes are at a significant higher risk for gum disease than those with normal blood sugar.
- Pancreatic Cancer – a recent study at Harvard Medical School consisting of over 51,00 men showed that men with a history of gum disease have more than double the risk of cancer of the pancreas.
- Respiratory Diseases are more common in those with periodontal disease.
- Periodontal Dangers in Pregnancy – many studies have shown the link between low birthweight infants and mothers with periodontal disease.
How is Gum Disease Treated?
Gum disease especially in the early stages can often have no noticeable symptoms. This makes routine dental cleanings much more important because a trained clinician can diagnose gingivitis. At Weldon Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry of Ocala, we utilize the latest in laser treatment to arrest and cure gum disease.
In many cases, gum disease can be arrested and reversed with a thorough cleaning by the hygienist and adequate home care following the cleaning. In other situations, more aggressive treatment is indicated. Dr. Weldon has the ability to treat these cases up to and including laser therapy. There are many degrees of gum disease and if you would like a thorough consultation and analysis, we encourage you to contact us electronically at any time or call us at (352) 622-3236.
Periodontal Therapy FAQs
Although gum disease is preventable, the infection can slowly creep up on you if you aren’t proactive about your oral hygiene. If you’ve recently been diagnosed with gum disease in Ocala, you’re sure to have several questions about the road ahead. There isn’t any need to worry. We’ll explain the treatment process and address any concerns during your visit. In the meantime, here are the answers to a few of the most common questions patients have about the infection to help you feel more confident about the decisions you’re making for your smile.
What are the signs of gum disease?
The early stage of gum disease (gingivitis) causes subtle symptoms that can often go ignored. Over time, the signs of the infection will become more obvious, including some that may be permanent, like tooth loss. It’s best to contact your dentist immediately for periodontal therapy in Ocala if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
- Gums pulling away from the teeth
- Persistent bad breath or bad taste
- Tooth sensitivity
- Pus pockets near the roots of your teeth
- Changes to your bite
- Changes to your alignment
- Loose teeth
Are there risk factors for gum disease?
Anyone can develop gum disease; however, there are certain risk factors that increase your likeness of it, such as:
- Smoking or tobacco use
- Drinking alcohol in excess
- Systemic disease
- Certain medications
- Overcrowded teeth
- Worn dental restorations
Can I prevent gum disease from reoccurring?
Over 50% of adult Americans have a form of gum disease, but it can be prevented with the right aftercare. If you’ve previously been treated for the infection, it’s more important than ever you take the necessary precautions to preserve your gum health, such as:
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day for 2-minutes each session using a soft-bristled toothbrush.
- Use a high-quality dental floss to clean in between each tooth and around the gum line daily.
- Consume a balanced diet that’s limited in sugars and starches.
- Don’t smoke or use tobacco.
- Don’t drink alcohol in excess.
- Visit your dentist at least twice a year for a cleaning and checkup.
What if I’ve lost teeth to the infection?
If you’ve lost a tooth or two from the infection, you’re not alone. Tooth loss is a common complication of advanced gum disease. Thankfully, you don’t need to live with an incomplete smile. After treating the infection, your dentist in Ocala can replace your missing teeth using an effective solution, like dental implants.
How much does periodontal therapy cost?
There isn’t a set fee for periodontal therapy because the cost is determined by your specific treatment plan. We’ll provide you with an estimate during your initial consultation and discuss your payment options, like using your dental insurance. Although every policy differs, most plans offer some coverage. We’ll work on your behalf with your insurance carrier to maximize your benefits to reduce your out-of-pocket expense. We will help you find the solutions you need to stop the infection without breaking the bank.