woman smiles at camera as dentist gets ready to perform periodontal treatment

Were you recently diagnosed with periodontal (gum) disease? The good news is that a dentist can treat it and restore your gum area. As one of the most common dental procedures, periodontal treatment often involves teeth cleaning and root planing. Both of these dental procedures in San Francisco can take care of the issue.

If you feel pain in your gums or think that you may have gum disease, then you may want to schedule an assessment with your dentist. Catching the condition early on can save you time and money in more complicated procedures down the road. Your dentist can evaluate your oral condition and then recommend the appropriate treatment for your mouth.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal diseases include a variety of conditions that cause infections and swelling in your gums and around your teeth. Periodontal disease is a progressive condition. In its early stages, it causes swelling and bleeding in your gums and, when neglected, transitions into gingivitis. Gingivitis can be reversed by practicing brushing and flossing regularly and attending annual or biannual dental appointments.

Common signs and symptoms of periodontal disease include:

  • Persistent bad breath
  • Tender, swollen or red gums
  • Painful chewing, tooth pain, and tooth sensitivity
  • Gums pulling away from your teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Bleeding gums

Periodontal disease is caused by bacteria and plaque, which can cause infections. When you experience an infection in your gums, it can cause serious medical and dental problems, especially if periodontal treatment is delayed.

When plaque is allowed to develop on your teeth, over time it begins to spread to your gum lines. Brushing and flossing regularly can prevent plaque buildup. Regular dental visits and cleanings are also another important way to prevent plaque and periodontal disease.

Once plaque begins to build up, your gums become swollen. Ultimately, gingivitis can lead to tissue damage in your gum lines, which can cause your teeth to become loose as pockets develop between your gum and teeth.

Periodontal Treatment

Periodontal treatment in San Francisco, CA offers focuses on mitigating damage and preventing periodontal diseases from worsening. If you develop periodontitis, which occurs when you develop pockets that are at least 4 mm deep between your gums and teeth, treatment from a dental professional is necessary.

Luckily, periodontal treatment is noninvasive in most cases. The main periodontal treatment is completing a deep cleaning of your mouth to remove plaque, bacteria, and tartar. When plaque is left on your teeth too long, it can calcify and harden and turn in to tartar. Since tartar is more difficult to remove than plaque, periodontal treatment in San Francisco offers provides scaling treatments to remove it from your teeth and gums.

If you develop a bacterial infection due to periodontal disease, a dentist can prescribe oral antibiotics. Periodontal treatment also includes making minor lifestyle changes, such as brushing and flossing more and avoiding acidic and sugary foods.

Teeth Scaling

Your dentist is likely to perform some level of scaling as a part of your periodontal treatment in San Francisco, CA. Scaling helps the dentist remove excessive plaque buildup. It goes a step further than a basic teeth cleaning, because standard brushing or cleaning may not remove the heavy buildup.

Scaling reaches below the gum line to remove the plaque. It is part of a deep cleaning process that is necessary to fully restore your teeth and gums throughout your oral cavity. During scaling, the dentist will use a hand-held instrument to remove the plaque from your teeth.

Since the procedure can produce pain and discomfort, your dentist may offer local anesthesia.

Root Planing

Root planing is similar to teeth scaling, but you go below the gumline to perform deep cleaning. Since planing is a non-surgical periodontal treatment in San Francisco, CA, it can be performed in almost any dentist’s office using relatively simple techniques. However, it may take more than one session to remove the plaque, depending on the condition of your teeth.

Root planing seeks to get to the deepest levels of your tooth root without performing extensive surgery. So, the procedure can also cause some pain and discomfort. Fortunately, the pain only lasts a few hours or, at most, a day.

Periodontal Disease Prevention

Although periodontal treatment is available for gum disease, your best option is to practice preventative measures that keep you from undergoing the procedure. Some of the things you can do to prevent needing gum disease treatment include:

  • Brushing your teeth twice a day with fluoride toothpaste
  • Replacing the toothbrush when the other one is worn out
  • Flossing every day to clean between your teeth
  • Using an antimicrobial mouthwash to kill bacteria
  • Putting down cigarettes for good and never smoking again

Smoking can be one of the leading causes of gum disease, oral cancer, and other health issues. Smoking is also responsible for browning your teeth, making it more challenging to keep them white.

Schedule Periodontal Treatment Today

Regular dental care is essential to proper oral hygiene. Even when you practice great oral hygiene at home, dental visits can help catch small issues before they become problematic. One common mistake people make when it comes to their dental health is waiting to see a dentist until they begin experiencing symptoms, such as pain or discomfort.

Most dental conditions, including periodontal disease, can be reversed and controlled in their early stages. Even minor problems, when left untreated, can snowball into serious issues. If you are in the early stages of gum disease, early periodontal treatment can restore your mouth to perfect health.

If you need to schedule periodontal treatment in San Francisco, CA, then contact Zeal Dentistry. We offer preventative, restorative, and cosmetic dental procedures for both children and adults. To schedule a checkup or periodontal treatment, call us at 415.792.4771. We are here to help you with all of your dental needs.