Gum Treatment / Periodontal Disease

Periodontal treatment methods depend upon the type and severity of the disease.  Dr. Han will evaluate for periodontal disease and recommend the appropriate treatment and prevention.

Gingivitis Prevention

Untreated gingivitis usually progresses into the more serious stages of gum disease, which causes irreversible bone loss and potential tooth loss. Prevention is therefore essential.

The best way to prevent gingivitis is to maintain good oral hygiene by brushing at least twice a day, flossing daily, using an antimicrobial mouth rinse — only if Dr Han recommend that — visiting Dr Han for regular checkups and maintaining a proper and nutritious diet.

Choosing the right toothbrush is important for gingivitis prevention. Softer brushes are less likely to injure your gums, and electric toothbrushes often seem to encourage better brushing habits. Remember not to overdo; brushing too long or too hard can do more harm than good.

Gingivitis Treatments

If the disease is caught in the early stages of gingivitis, and no damage has been done, one to two regular cleanings will be recommended.  You will also be given instructions on improving your daily oral hygiene habits and having regular dental cleanings.

If gingivitis is caught in its earliest stages, it is extremely manageable. Dr Han will thoroughly clean your teeth in a process called scaling, during which all hardened tartar and plaque are removed from your teeth, both above and below the gum line. Tooth scaling can be uncomfortable, depending on the amount of tartar and plaque buildup and your level of tooth sensitivity, so a numbing gel or anesthetic injection may be administered to the area.

Periodontal disease progresses as the sulcus (pocket or space) between the tooth and gums gets filled with bacteria, plaque, and tartar, causing irritation to the surrounding tissues.  When these irritants remain in the pocket space, they can cause damage to the gums and eventually, the bone that supports the teeth.

If the disease has progressed to more advanced stages, a special periodontal cleaning called scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) will be recommended.  It is usually done one quadrant of the mouth at a time while the area is numb.  In this procedure, tartar, plaque, and toxins are removed from above and below the gum line (scaling) and rough spots on root surfaces are made smooth (planing).  This procedure helps gum tissue to heal and pockets to shrink.  Medications, special concetrate antibiodic solution called Arestin®, waterpik, and an electric tooth brush may be recommended to help control infection and healing.

If the pockets do not heal after scaling and root planning, periodontal surgery may be needed to reduce pocket depths, making teeth easier to clean.