Periodontal disease

One area of focus in my practice for 2014 is the treatment for periodontal disease.  That may sound funny coming from a Periodontist but fewer and fewer patients have been obtaining adequate periodontal therapy in the US.

A Center for Disease Control (CDC) study published recently found that almost half of adult Americans have periodontal disease.

Obtaining adequate treatment starts with a yearly periodontal examination.  Areas with pockets deeper than 3 mm that harbor bacteria are typically treated with a non-surgical procedure called scaling and root planing.

If pockets and inflamed gums persist after scaling and root planing, we offer a procedure called Laser Pocket Therapy.   This procedure is a surgical procedure that cleans the roots of teeth using an erbium laser and high magnification.   It is very easy to tolerate for most patients.  I routinely hear about sore gums but not pain.  Patients return to normal activities the day after the procedure.

I encourage every dental patient to get a periodontal exam and seek out appropriate treatment as quickly as possible.  With early treatment, less invasive procedures can be done.  Flap surgery that takes weeks to heal can be avoided.  Teeth can be saved.

Thanks for reading.