Our Non-Surgical Periodontal Therapy Options in Frisco, TX
Often referred to as initial phase therapy, non-surgical therapy is usually the starting point of comprehensive periodontal treatment. It essentially allows us to halt the progression of bone and gum disease.
Years of dental neglect may take some time for teeth, gums and bone to heal. Therefore, based on years of peer reviewed literature, it’s agreed that initiating a thorough, staged approach is the best solution for correcting diseases of the gums and bones, particularly for patients with early or progressing periodontal disease.
In essence, non-surgical treatment exhausts all efforts before cutting away gums and bones. This initial phase, including gum healing and home care observation, may take up to 6 weeks before a surgical treatment plan can be established for some patients.
Comprehensive Periodontal Examination
During the initial exam, Dr. Zachary Carnow reviews all pertinent medical conditions and the most up-to-date medical history of the patient. This exam may also include digital x-rays, 3D scans, oral cancer screenings, periodontal/gum measurements (i.e. bleeding areas), home care instructions and finally treatment planning.
A smile is often the first trait people notice about you, so it’s not surprising that everyone wants a healthy, white smile. Whether your smile is used to exert confidence in public or enjoy time with friends and family, it makes a big difference in your daily life. Unfortunately, the mouth may be the easiest body region to neglect. Forgetfulness and laziness with proper home care can easily lead to bleeding and swollen gums.
Fortunately, routine cleanings every 6 months help maintain a healthy mouth for most patients. By removing hardened food and plaque deposits, we can reverse the signs of gingivitis, a common condition characterized by inflammation of the gum tissue that does not affect the bone.
Prophylaxis, or routine cleanings, are performed every 3, 4 or 6 months on patients exhibiting a healthy mouth with minimal bone and gum loss (also described as attachment loss). Some patients who show signs of inability to properly clean (due to physical or mental barriers) or accrue more hardened plaque are recommended to be seen at a more frequent interval to prevent the onset of periodontitis. Having one’s teeth cleaned routinely is the easiest preventive measure taken to ensure a healthy and long-lasting smile.
Scaling and Root Planing
When bone and gum loss occurs, a more thorough cleaning is necessary. This deep cleaning works to remove plaque collected in the newly formed spaces as a result of the gums pulling away from teeth. These spaces, also known as pockets, cannot be properly cleaned with brushing alone.
Scaling and root planing has been proven to benefit patients suffering from chronic periodontitis (the stage of gum disease that advances past gingivitis.) Scaling refers to the process of removing all plaque and tartar (calculus) above and below the gumline. After all plaque has been removed from the bottom of the pockets, we’ll move on to root planing. Root planing involves smoothing out the teeth roots to help the gums reattach and prevent future plaque buildup. This procedure is typically performed with a hand scaler and ultra-sonic cleaner to separate calculus from teeth.
This is an unnatural habit that involves grinding, clenching or clamping the teeth. Over time, these forces can easily damage the teeth and their supporting structures. Common signs of bruxism include:
- Wearing patterns along the chewing surfaces of teeth
- Flattening chewing surfaces (indicative of side to side grinding)
- Pointed chewing surfaces (indicative of clenching, like chewing on imaginary bubble gum)
Furthermore, bruxism may be a commonly overlooked sign of a greater problem such as undiagnosed anxiety or a sleeping disorder. If you experience bruxism symptoms, including earaches, headaches, eating disorders, anxiety or chronic stress, you’ll want to be examined further to receive the most accurate diagnosis.
Many people don’t realize that their misaligned bite has the potential to cause gum recession. When crooked teeth come together, they can apply too much force on the gums and bone, resulting in receding gums and the development of pockets. Remember, your teeth are not static entities; they are constantly moving and shifting throughout their life. For example, teeth may move when:
- Retainers are not worn
- Teeth are removed and space is left empty
- Teeth are not in the right place or malpositioned
To fix shifting or misaligned teeth, we can fill the spaces in your smile with dental bridges, dentures or dental implants. If your teeth are simply crooked, orthodontic therapy can shift them into a healthier position over time. After this treatment, it is crucial to wear your retainer to prevent your teeth from relapsing.
To learn which non-surgical periodontal therapy is right for you, contact your periodontist in Frisco,
Dr. Zachary Carnow, today!