If you have gum disease, you may want to know that advancements in technology have expanded the number and variety of treatments available, including laser dentistry. Traditional cut and sew gum surgery is not the only option. Dr. Darryl A. Field offers some insight on the treatments offered for gum disease at his Jacksonville Beach, FL, office.
Non-Surgical Treatments for Periodontal Disease
When gum disease is in its beginning stages, it can be treated with professional dental cleanings and/or antibiotic therapy. We can remove bacteria from the mouth or treat infection with antibiotics to maintain dental health.
Scaling and root planing is another method that is non-surgical yet very effective. These deeper cleanings remove the plaque above and below the gum line. Rough spots on the tooth surface, caused by bacteria, are smoothed, which allow the gums to reattach to the teeth.
Surgical Treatments for Periodontal Disease
For moderate to severe cases of gum disease, our dentist may recommend gum surgery. Both traditional flap surgery and laser dentistry are available. With scalpel-based traditional surgery, the bacteria are removed and the bone is smoothed, similar to scaling and root planing. However, the gum tissue is cut in order to access the bone and any excess diseased tissue is trimmed away.
Laser dentistry is performed without scalpels or sutures. With the Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure (LANAP®), the fine tip of the laser is inserted between the teeth and gums. The laser light emits a frequency that removes bacteria and diseased tissue. The laser can also be utilized to encourage the regrowth of bone. Patients experience little to no discomfort, bleeding, or swelling.
Additional Treatments That May Be Necessary After Gum Disease
After prolonged gum disease, some patients suffer from bone loss, receding gums, or even tooth loss. Bone grafts, gum grafts, dentures, or dental implants may be necessary to restore your smile. Gum and bone grafts are similar in that bone from your own mouth will be surgically grafted to the treatment site. Over time, the new tissue fuses to the existing tissue to recreate a strong foundation for teeth or implants.