If you’re like most people, you don’t think about how important your gums are on a daily basis, but your gums protect and support your teeth and hold them to the jaw bone. When the gums are unhealthy, you risk losing your teeth, and you also put yourself at a higher risk for serious illnesses like heart disease and stroke. Gum disease is an infection of the gums that is often painless—which may mean that you may not know that you have it. Symptoms of gum disease include red, swollen, bleeding gums, receding gums and loose or separating teeth.
The good news is, gum disease can be treated by your dentist. To find out if you have gum disease, contact Dr. Jeff S. Luffey, DDS, a family dentist in Albuquerque, NM. During a dental exam, Dr. Luffey will determine if you have gum disease and design a plan to treat your gum disease and prevent it from reoccurring. You will enjoy a healthy, beautiful smile for a lifetime when you contact Dr. Luffey to treat your gum disease.
Non-Surgical Gum Disease Treatment
If you have gum disease, you may be able to have it treated without surgery. Most often, patients with early gum disease can enjoy non-surgical treatment that reverses gum disease and prevents it from reoccurring. Non-surgical gum disease treatments include:
- Professional Dental Cleaning: Luffey will remove plaque and tartar during a dental cleaning at our Albuquerque dentist’s office. This allows him to examine your teeth to identify gum disease. Regular dental cleanings will also prevent gum disease from reoccurring.
- Scaling & Root Planing: If you have hard, built-up plaque on your teeth in addition to gum disease, scaling and root planing may be right for you. Scaling and root planing is a deep dental cleaning that removes plaque and tartar from under the gum line and smoothes out the surface of your teeth to promote healing. As a family dentist, Dr. Luffey provides scaling and root planing in Albuquerque, NM. If you are in the early stages of gum disease, scaling and root planing will likely reverse your gum disease.
- Periodontal Maintenance: Following your scaling and root planing, Dr. Luffey may recommend specialized deep cleanings to prevent the reoccurrence or progression of gum disease.
Surgical Gum Disease Treatment
Sometimes, surgical gum disease treatment is necessary to treat periodontal disease. This is usually when gum disease is more advanced. Examples of surgical gum disease treatment include:
- Pocket Reduction Surgery: During this procedure, the gums are lifted back and tartar removed. Then the gums are put back into place so that the tissue fits tightly around the tooth. This reduces the size of the space between your teeth and gums, decreasing the areas where harmful bacteria can grow.
- Soft Tissue Grafts: During this procedure, grafted tissue (usually taken from the roof of the mouth) is used to fill in the places where gums are thin or receded.
- Guided Tissue Regeneration: This dental surgery is performed when the bone supporting your teeth has been destroyed. A small piece of mesh fabric is inserted between the bone and gum tissue to allow the bone and connective tissue to regrow to better support the teeth. Guided tissue regeneration is usually done in combination with flap surgery.
- Bone Surgery. This dental surgery treats bone loss by smoothing the shallow craters in the bone due to moderate and advanced bone loss. This prevents bacteria from collecting and growing.
Do You Have a Fear of the Dentist?—A Note About Sedation Dentistry
Has a fear of going to the dentist held you back from getting the gum disease treatment that you need? Dr. Luffey offers sedation dentistry to allow you to get the gum disease treatment you need in fewer appointments. With sedation dentistry, you will take a sedative before your gum disease treatment. Sedation keeps you relaxed and calm throughout your gum disease treatment. To learn more about sedation dentistry and gum disease treatment in Albuquerque, contact our family dentist by calling 505-907-7720 to schedule an appointment.