Periodontal Disease & Treatments in Central Indiana
Healthy gums help make a healthy smile, and the condition of your gums is an essential factor in your overall oral health. When your gums are not healthy, periodontal disease increases the risk of tooth loss and other oral health issues. Good oral health habits like brushing, flossing, and keeping up with your regular preventive dental exams are crucial for preventing periodontal disease. However, despite these efforts, it may still be possible to develop this condition. The trick is to recognize it early and start receiving periodontal treatment as soon as possible to prevent further damage.
We are passionate about helping you and your family members achieve optimal dental health in a pleasant and relaxed environment. We are conveniently located on Rockville Road, two miles west from I-465, behind the Culvers. Contact us today to learn how we can help you get past gum disease and on to a healthy mouth and smile!
CALL US: (317) 299-4731 REQUEST APPOINTMENT
Advanced Periodontal Treatment
Periodontal therapy is focused on protecting your natural teeth by ensuring that your gums and other supporting structures are kept in top condition. Dr. Gomes does this by preserving, improving, and maintaining the health of your gums, as well as any dental implants you already have or may need in the future. These treatments also improve and maintain your comfort by eliminating pain and discomfort and restoring your healthy smile.
As periodontal experts, our team provides excellent communication and advanced care to maintain the health, function, and appearance of gum tissue, teeth, and the supporting ligaments and bone.
- Gingiva is the soft, pink tissue that surrounds the bottom of each of your teeth, which is referred to as gum tissue. This tissue covers the alveolar bone ridge that surrounds each tooth in your mouth.
- Periodontal ligament provides a supportive function by attaching your teeth to the surrounding alveolar bone. This is done with the ligament’s fibers, which form a strong bond between the roots’ cementum and the bone.
- Cementum is a mineralized connective tissue that resembles bone and covers the dentin on the roots of your teeth. This surface layer attaches your teeth to the alveolar bone by anchoring periodontal ligament fibers and gingivae. It can also be found on the crowns of your teeth.
- Alveolar bone is the part of your jaw that holds your teeth. The area of this bone that comes in contact with the roots of your teeth is referred to as the alveolar bone proper, which consists of hard, compact bone material, not soft, spongy bone material.
What Causes Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease is an infection in the gums and other structures around the teeth, including the periodontal ligament and alveolar bone. It is caused by bacteria that are trapped in dental plaque, which is a sticky substance that forms on your teeth. Plaque can be removed with daily brushing and flossing, but a professional cleaning by our gentle and experienced team is more effective and reaches areas of your mouth missed by brushing and flossing.
Most periodontal disease can be prevented by practicing good oral hygiene habits and professional cleanings every six months. However, gaps in your routine, such as missed appointments, and even genetics can lead to plaque buildup that eventually spreads below your gum line. When it reaches this point, you need the help of a professional to remove bacteria and stop further damage. Other factors that can increase your chances for gum disease include:
- Genetic predisposition
- Hormone fluctuation
- Wearing braces or having bridgework, misaligned, or crowded teeth
- Poor nutrition
- Smoking and tobacco use
- Grinding or clenching of teeth
- Medications that cause dry mouth or cause the gums to enlarge
- Certain diseases or conditions like diabetes, HIV, IBD, or leukemia
Stages of Periodontal Disease
At its earliest stage, periodontal disease begins as gingivitis, which can cause bleeding and swollen gums. If not treated, the infection can spread to other tissues and cause them to detach from the tooth. Then it forms a space that is referred to as a “pocket” between the tooth and gum. Pockets in the gums allow further plaque accumulation that makes it even harder to remove. If left untreated, your body’s inflammatory response could spread the bacteria and cause damage to your periodontal ligament and alveolar bone.
The Connection Between Periodontal Disease and Other Health Problems
Research studies have found that there is a possible connection between periodontal disease and some severe health conditions. This is still a controversial and new area of research, but it is well worth considering your overall physical health. Periodontal disease has been linked to:
- Heart disease, including atherosclerosis. Gum disease may increase the risk of clogged arteries and heart conditions, along with exasperating existing heart conditions
- The risk of a stroke increased due to blocked arteries
- Diabetes complications increase the risk of gum disease due to unregulated blood sugar levels
- Respiratory conditions have increased risk because gum disease could cause infections if the bacteria reaches the lungs
What Happens During a Periodontal Examination?
If your gums show signs of periodontal disease or you need a dental implant procedure, we will evaluate your current oral health with a thorough examination. We will make sure that your gums and supporting structures are strong and healthy enough to support a dental implant. Here are a few things that might happen during your examination as we determine your gum health:
- A review of your medical history to determine if there are any contributing factors
- A visual inspection of your mouth to check plaque and tartar buildup and identify swollen or bleeding gums
- Detailed measurements of the pocket depth between your gums and teeth
- Dental X-rays to check for bone loss in areas where deeper pockets exist
Depending on the outcome of your exam, our team will recommend a treatment course that may either be nonsurgical or surgical. We may also recommend changes you can make in your oral care routine or lifestyle that will increase the chance of successful periodontal treatment.
Traditional and Laser Periodontal Care Services
Our periodontal practice provides comprehensive care for the treatment of periodontal disease. We use the latest techniques to address your unique needs, including:
Scaling & Root Planing
This is a conventional, non-surgical procedure that can be used as both a preventative measure and a stand-alone treatment for periodontitis. Scaling removes calculus (tartar) and plaque from root surfaces and the surface of the tooth’s crown and often involves an irrigation process. Root planning removes cementum and surface dentin that contains toxins and tartar to smooth out the root to promote optimal healing and prevent bacteria from colonizing in the future.
Oral Pathology Diagnosis
An oral exam is generally performed during your initial comprehensive exam and check-up. This exam helps identify and manage diseases that may occur in your mouth or maxillofacial regions. We keep track of changes that may arise with your gums, tongue, lips, and other soft tissues. An oral cancer screening is also performed during this examination, as well as a biopsy if needed.
Advantages of Laser Gum Procedures
We use advanced dental lasers for non-invasive procedures that previously required surgical treatment. Instead of using a scalpel, procedures like soft tissue shaping and biopsies can be accomplished with the intense beams of light produced by a dental laser. Advantages of using lasers for periodontitis include:
- Faster tissue regeneration and healing
- Reduced risk of infection after procedures
- Reduced need for anesthesia, sutures, stitches during procedures
- Reduced bleeding during and after periodontal treatment
Restoring Your Oral Health with Dental Implants
Periodontal treatment plays an essential part in the process of dental implantation. Any periodontal issues or deficiencies in gums, jawbone, and other supporting structures must be addressed before implantation to prevent infection and other serious complications that can lead to the failure of an implant. Whenever possible, the most conservative approach will be used to treat your periodontal disease. However, there may be instances where surgical treatment is the best course of action.
Dental implants are the most innovative solution to missing teeth. The dental implant refers to the titanium post that is surgically placed in the jawbone connecting the crown to the jawbone. Dental implants look and function like natural teeth and are designed to last a lifetime. Many implant patients can go back to their regular routines in a short amount of time, and report that the treatment gives them more confidence and makes them feel younger.
There are several types of surgical treatments that can be used to treat periodontal disease at its various stages, including:
- Gum grafts are used to recontour the gum line when gums have receded from periodontal disease to give your teeth a more aesthetic appearance
- Pocket reduction surgery to go below the gum line to clean plaque, tartar, and bacteria from the root surfaces of the teeth to restore health to your gums and bone
- Ridge modification to repair damage to the jawbone as a result of periodontal disease to improve the cosmetic appearance of the jaw and ready it for dental implants
- Sinus augmentation to elevate the sinus floor before dental implants to allow new bone to form
- Root amputation to save an otherwise healthy tooth when severe bone loss in a concentrated area has occurred because of periodontitis
Also known as a bone graft, bone regeneration is used to correct bone loss in the oral cavity that is caused by periodontal disease, ill-fitting dentures, or facial trauma. This procedure is an excellent way to replace lost bone tissue while promoting natural bone growth.
Regeneration treatment can also include tissue stimulating proteins to encourage the growth of acellular cementum lost from periodontal disease. Platelet-rich growth factors can promote faster healing and stimulate bone growth for a denser bone graft.
Why Choose Central Indiana Periodontics for Your Care?
Our goal is to provide the best possible treatment and experience for you and your family. We stay current on the latest technology, including laser procedures. Whenever possible, we will focus on thorough and consistent, non-invasive treatment with lasers before resorting to surgery. We solve problems and find solutions for even the most complex issues, including trauma injuries.
Your comfort is always our top priority. Therefore, we offer nitrous, oral sedation, and IV sedation for our anxious patients. We are experienced in treatment and retreatment to help make your procedure gentle and allow you to recover faster. Let our fantastic team help you love your smile again. Call us today and schedule a visit!
CALL US: (317) 299-4731 REQUEST APPOINTMENT