“Periodontics is the specialty of dentistry that studies the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases affecting the tissues that support the teeth (gums, bone and periodontal ligaments). In Caballero Dental Clinic we care about the health, function and aesthetics of your teeth and supporting tissues.”
GINGIVITIS AND PERIODONTITIS
The main diseases which can be found are gingivitis and periodontitis:
Gingivitis is the swelling of the gums with no loss of supporting bone. The main cause is poor oral hygiene and, therefore, the presence of bacteria.
This involves alveolar bone loss, and may be associated with other factors (in addition to poor hygiene), such as genetic factors and hormones.
Main causative factor: bacteria
The main cause of gum disease is bacteria. In the mouth there are many types of bacteria, many of which are harmful to the tissues that support the teeth. This bacteria eventually form plaque between the tooth and gum. The severity of damage to the gums depends on the susceptibility of each individual, which is determined by genetics. However, genetic predisposition is not sufficient to cause periodontitis, what is required is the presence of bacteria.
Periodontitis is the major cause of tooth loss and hence its significance in diseases of the mouth.
The symptoms of periodontal disease include redness, swelling and bleeding of the gums, especially when brushing. They can also cause bad breath, tooth mobility and gum recession. We recommend immediate treatment if you have any of these symptoms.
What treatments are available?
The treatment is based on eliminating bacteria, thus stopping the progression of the disease. This is done using an ultrasound device that removes plaque deposited on the tooth, or by curettage or physical scraping where there is more accumulation of calculus (tartar) below the gum or if periodontal pockets are present.
In Caballero Dental Clinic we insist on the technical correction of hygiene for good plaque control, to eliminate the triggers of the disease (calculus or periodontal pockets).
There are systemic conditions and diseases such as diabetes and emotional stress, which can influence periodontal disease.
Tobacco and smokers
Although tobacco is not able to directly produce periodontal disease, what it does is increase the severity of the disease through a decreased blood supply to the gum tissues. Consequently there is a decreased defense against bacteria and this also decreases the effectiveness of treatment.
How do we recognize healthy gums?
- Color: Usually pink, although according to racial pigmentation they may vary in color.
- Thickness: generally the gum is a thin, delicate layer covering a tooth root.
- They do not bleed under any normal stimulus (brushing, eating, examine the gums). In the case of smokers, the gums may not bleed but may be inflamed, as tobacco decreases blood supply and therefore inflammation is not as visible but still exists.
- Dotted surface: the surface of the gum looks like orange peel and occurs mainly in the gum covering the front teeth.
- The gum must completely cover the tooth root.
It is very important to keep up with regular check ups after periodontal treatment for lasting results. In Caballero Dental Clinic we will give a reminder when these are due.