Signs and Symptoms of Periodontal Disease
- Red and puffy gums
- Bleeding gums
- Persistent bad breath
- New spacing between teeth
- Loose teeth
- Pus around the teeth and gums
- Receding gums
- Tenderness or Discomfort
If the disease is caught in the early stages of gingivitis, and no damage has been done, one to two regular cleanings will be recommended. You will also be given instructions on improving your daily oral hygiene habits and having regular dental cleanings.
If the disease has progressed to more advanced stages, a special periodontal cleaning called scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) will be recommended. It is usually done one quadrant of the mouth at a time while the area is numb.
In this procedure, tartar, plaque, and toxins are removed from above and below the gum line (scaling) and rough spots on root surfaces are made smooth (planing). This procedure helps gum tissue to heal and pockets to shrink.
Medications, special medicated mouth rinses, and an electric tooth brush may be recommended to help control infection and healing.
If the pockets do not heal after scaling and root planning, periodontal surgery may be needed to reduce pocket depths, making teeth easier to clean. Your dentist may also recommend that you see a Periodontist (specialist of the gums and supporting bone).
Good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits can help detect, treat, and reduce your risk of developing periodontal disease.
Teeth whitening has now become the number one aesthetic concern of many patients. Now many products and methods have been developed to achieve a brighter smile.
As we age, the outer layer of tooth enamel wears away, eventually revealing a darker or yellow shade. The color of our teeth also comes from the inside of the tooth, which may become darker over time. Smoking, drinking coffee, tea, and wine may can contribute to tooth discoloration, making our teeth yellow and dull.
Sometimes, teeth can become discolored from taking certain medications as a child, such as tetracycline. Excessive fluoridation (fluorosis) during tooth development can also cause teeth to become discolored.
It’s important to have your teeth evaluated by your dentist to determine if you’re a good candidate for bleaching.
Occasionally, tetracycline and fluorosis stains are difficult to bleach and your dentist may offer other options, such as veneers or crowns to cover up such stains. Since teeth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, it is important to evaluate replacement of any old fillings, crowns, etc. before bleaching begins. Your dentist can match the new restorations to the shade of the newly whitened teeth.
Professional teeth whitening (or bleaching) is a simple, non-invasive dental treatment used to change the color of natural tooth enamel, and can be an ideal way to enhance the beauty of your smile. While over-the-counter products are also available, they are much less effective than professional treatments and all are not approved by the American Dental Association (ADA).
Since teeth whitening is not permanent, a touch-up may be needed every several years to keep your smile looking bright.