Healthy gums support healthy teeth. The gums are important not only for the health of the smile, but the aesthetics as well. Dr. Brent Blaylock place significant emphasis on periodontal health and offers a variety of treatments to meet your health needs.
Dr. Blaylock performs a periodontal screening during routine preventive care visits to his Durham dentist office. He emphasizes the importance of visiting his office twice a year because it provides he and his staff the opportunity to spot dental problems such as gum disease in the early stages and offer effective conservative treatment that can save future damage or complex dental problems.
For patients who have gum disease, Dr. Blaylock offers periodontal therapy to treat affected areas and restore oral health. Treatment options depend on the stage of the disease and the severity of damage to teeth and/or gum tissue.
About Gum Disease
Often called the “silent disease”, gum disease can go unnoticed by many patients until they come in for a routine preventive care visit or begin to experience the more severe symptoms associated with later stage disease.
Common Signs and Symptoms of Gum Disease
- Bleeding gums
- Gum pain
- Sore gums
- Receding gums
- Loose teeth
- Bad breath
Left untreated, gum disease can threaten the health of the teeth and even be the cause of tooth loss. Visiting our Durham dentist twice per year is important for the prevention of gum disease and associated dental concerns.
Diagnosing Gum Disease
Dr. Blaylock will determine the stage of gum disease as a result of a thorough dental examination and discussion of possible symptoms you may be experiencing. Early stage gum disease is difficult for most patients to spot and often has no signs or symptoms.
Stages of Gum Disease:
- Gingivitis: early stage gum disease, gingivitis develops as a result of the build up of plaque and tartar along the gum line. This process begins to create pockets between the teeth and gums which allow bacteria to get deep into the soft tissues of the mouth and eventually the tooth structure. Gingivitis is often the result of poor oral hygiene and a lack of dental care, but there are additional factors such as genetics and medical conditions that can also place patients at a higher risk of developing periodontal disease.
- Periodontitis: late stage gum disease is known as periodontitis and may require a more comprehensive treatment approach to restore oral health. Periodontitis can result in complex dental health problems, including tooth loss.
Treatment for Gum Disease
Dr. Blaylock will recommend a plan of treatment based on the stage of gum disease and your overall oral health. In many cases, when gingivitis is present, a procedure called scaling and root planing can successfully restore dental health by removing plaque from the deep pockets of the gums and the tooth roots. In addition, at home care may be prescribed to keep then gums healthy between visits.
For patients with advanced gum disease, Dr. Blaylock may coordinate treatment with a local specialist who can treat the damaged tissue with surgical treatment options.
Restoring healthy gums is important- the gums support the teeth and are the foundation for lifelong oral health.