Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the tissues that support your teeth. Left alone, gum disease can lead to tooth decay and even tooth loss. However, periodontal therapy can save teeth from loss or extraction.
How Periodontal Disease Works
Did you know your gum tissue is not attached to your teeth as high as you may think? There is actually a very shallow, V-shaped crevice called the sulcus between the tooth and your gums.
Periodontal disease attacks just below the gum line in the sulcus. This is where they cause the attachment of the tooth and its supporting tissues to break down.
As the tissues are damaged, the sulcus develops into a pocket. Generally, the more severe the disease, the greater the depth of the pocket. Food particles and bacteria can get stuck in these deep pockets, leading to infection, tooth decay, and tooth loss.
Treating Gum Disease
Early stages of gum disease, like good oral hygiene routine. Advanced stages, like , can only be treated, not cured. However, treatment is important in preventing more oral health issues., can be reversed with dental care and a
Our Grand Rapids dentists can minimize the risks of periodontal disease by performing deep root planing (cleaning) of the area between the pocket and the tooth roots. Professional cleaning causes the pocket to tighten and seal, protecting it against prolonged infection.
Treatment of gum disease has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiac disease in clinical studies. This is because decreased inflammation caused by bacterial infection can help keep your entire body healthy. Periodontal therapy can also save teeth from extraction due to decay and loosening.