Gum disease is a growing health epidemic in the United States. A serious and progressive bacterial infection of the gums, gum disease has been linked to a range of complex systemic health conditions. Catching gum disease before it begins to spread can prevent complex complications.
Routine dental checkups can help control the development and spread of gum disease. Dr. Uttma Dham offers thorough periodontal screenings at all oral health exams. Dr. Dham works closely with our in-house periodontist, Dr. Darren Pike. Dr. Pike helps patients with complex gum disease rebuild their oral health.
The Progression of Gum Disease
- Gingivitis- Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease. Most patients will have gingivitis at some point in their lives. Patients may notice bleeding of the gums, swelling, or light sensitivity. Gum disease is best treated if caught when still in the gingivitis stage. Most patients are able to control the spread of bacteria at this stage with improved at home oral hygiene and thorough dental cleanings. Gingivitis can be controlled and further damage can be prevented. Dr. Dham or Dr. Pike can help patients improve their brushing and flossing techniques and make personalized recommendations of additional products for use such as anti-bacterial mouthwash.
- Gum Disease- Left untreated, bacteria continue to spread causing damage to the gums. Bacteria begin to create deep pockets in the gums causing the gumline to pull away from the surface of the teeth. Gum recession is common and teeth may begin to loosen or shift. Scaling and root planning is a deep penetrative cleaning procedure commonly used to treat gum disease at this stage. Dr. Dham also offers laser therapy for the treatment of gum disease. High tech lasers actually clean the gums and promote natural healing for a faster recovery.
- Periodontitis- Periodontist is the final stage of gum disease. At this point, the damage has been done to the structure of the teeth, bone, and gums. Patients begin to experience bone loss, facial sagging, and jaw recession. Patients with periodontitis may require gum surgery, bone grafting or dental implants to replace missing teeth. As part of Westside Dental Center’s comprehensive services, we offer patients in-house periodontal services. Our periodontist Dr. Darren Pike brings years of experience helping patients restore their oral health after gum disease.