What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease, or periodontitis, is a serious oral health condition that affects the gums, teeth, and jawbone. This condition starts occurs plaque and calculus build-up increase oral bacteria, which in turn causes gum inflammation. As the condition progresses from gingivitis to periodontitis to advanced periodontitis, the bacteria gradually eats away at the gums and connective tissue which hold teeth in place. Ultimately, patients face serious gum damage, decayed teeth, and even tooth loss in severe cases.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
While gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults, few people recognize the symptoms early enough to get the proactive treatment they need. As a result, many patients in the early stages of gum disease ignore the symptoms and let the condition progress until it’s already caused serious damage to the gums and teeth. If you begin to notice any of these symptoms, be sure to schedule and appointment with our Waterloo dentist immediately:
- Red, bleeding, or swollen gums
- Chronic bad breath
- A sour taste in your mouth
- Receding gum line
- Deep pockets or holes between the teeth and gums
- Teeth that feel loose or appear to have shifted
- Pain while chewing
- Changes in the way your bite fits together
- Sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures
When it comes to overcoming gum disease, the earlier you get treatment, the better. If caught in it’s earliest stage, Dr. Ashraf can provide you with non-invasive treatments that can reverse the symptoms.
Gum Disease Treatments by Dr. Ashraf
At our Waterloo dental office, we know that every case of gum disease requires a unique treatment. We provide personalized treatments for gum disease, including:
- Scaling and Root Planing: Scaling and Root Planing can usually treat cases of mild or moderate gum disease. During this procedure, Dr. Ashraf will remove hardened plaque and bacteria from under your gum line, and then smooth out tooth roots to prevent bacteria from cleaning to the newly cleaned area. Our dentist may also place a slow-release antibiotic below your gums to discourage bacteria growth.
- Gingivectomy: In more severe cases of gum disease, scaling and root planing may not be enough to prevent reinfection. Gum removal surgery, or gingivectomies, can remove infected tissue or reshape gum tissue loosened by periodontal pockets. This treatment allows through plaque removal and can help encourage healing after gum disease.
- Gingival Plastic Surgery: Also known as esthetic gingival plastic surgery, this treatment can help restore the shape and health of your gums after periodontal disease treatment. This treatment may also be recommended for patients who feel their smiles are too “gummy”.
Contact Dr. Ashraf for a Free Consultation
If you suspect that you have gum disease, there’s no time to waste. Contact our Waterloo dentist today for a FREE consultation and to explore your treatment options. We look forward to meeting you!