Gum Disease Treatment in Tucson, AZ
Have you noticed a change in your gums recently? Do they look red and tender or bleed when you eat hard or crunchy foods? Whenever you notice anything different about the way your gums look or feel, there’s a good chance you’re seeing symptoms of gum disease.
Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that develops on your teeth throughout the day. Whatever you’ve had in your mouth throughout the day – food, drink, and even saliva – causes plaque to develop. If you haven’t heard it often enough, this is why Dr. Michael Allen and the team at Sabino Hills Family Dentistry emphasize the need for brushing and flossing at least twice a day.
When plaque is not removed with proper oral hygiene, it sits on your teeth and hardens into a substance called tartar or calculus. Tartar is a very hard substance that stays bonded to the surface of your teeth until a trained dental hygienist can remove it with special instruments.
The Two Stages of Gum Disease
We also refer to gum disease as periodontal disease or periodontal infection. Gum disease is caused by a buildup of plaque and tartar on your teeth that harbor bacteria and causes infections if not removed. There are two stages of gum disease:
Stage One – Gingivitis
The earliest and mildest form of gum disease is gingivitis and is usually reversible if detected and treated promptly. At this stage, the infection starts to affect your gums, and you may notice symptoms like gums that bleed when you brush or inflamed gums. However, in some cases, you can have gingivitis without any noticeable symptoms so be sure to keep up with routine dental exams and cleanings.
Without treatment, gingivitis can lead to...
Stage Two – Periodontitis
Periodontitis occurs when the gum infection spreads and attacks the structures that support your teeth, including bone. As the gums pull away from your teeth, periodontal pockets form between the gums and your teeth. These spaces are a perfect place for bacteria to grow, leading to loss of bone and tissue, loosening of the teeth, and even potential tooth loss.
Treating Gum Disease
Choosing the appropriate treatment for you depends on your The treatment we choose for you depends on the severity of the infection and your general health. Minor infections are typically easy to treat with a thorough dental cleaning. Your hygienist may recommend follow-up visits and tips for improving your at-home oral hygiene.
If you have a more advanced case of gum disease, we would recommend a deep cleaning procedure called scaling and root planing. This treatment clears away bacteria and smoothes the root surfaces of your teeth. This eliminates spots where bacteria can collect and cause a re-infection. Your hygienist will irrigate the area with an antibacterial rinse to ensure that any remaining bacteria are removed and to give your smile a fresh, new start.
A deep cleaning treatment will usually be followed up with recall appointments every four to six weeks at our Tucson dental office. Your hygienist may also recommend visiting us more frequently for cleanings to monitor your oral health and stay a step ahead of the gum disease.
Call to Schedule an Appointment for a Cleaning
If you practice good oral hygiene and schedule regular dental cleanings, you may never have to worry about gum infection. A dental cleaning can remove the tartar and plaque that cause gum disease and, with the help of the team at Sabino Hills Family Dentistry, you can follow a treatment plan that keeps your teeth and gums healthy and strong.
Call us today to schedule your next appointment for a professional teeth cleaning!