What is non-surgical treatment of gum disease? What is a deep cleaning? What can I do about my bleeding and puffy gums? These are common questions of new patients in our West Village, NYC dental office. The gums are the foundation of your teeth and everyday science is demonstrating a link between your overall oral health and systematic health.
There are two very common types of gum disease. The first is gingivitis – characterized by red, puffy, bleeding and inflamed gums. It is usually induced or started by too much bacteria or plaque in your mouth. If left untreated, it can progress to a more serious form of gum disease called periodontitis. Periodontitis is characterized by the loss of gum and bone tissues that hold the teeth in your mouth. There are various classifications of these gum diseases that Keith Bracy, DDS can explain to you at your dentist appointment in our NYC office.
So what do you do if you have gum disease? The first step, often called “initial therapy” or “non-surgical treatment of gum disease” is scaling and root planing. Sometimes dentists and dental hygienists refer to this as a “deep cleaning”. To call this a “deep cleaning” really doesn’t do the procedure justice as it is a very important procedure that can save and preserve your teeth. Other non-surgical methods of gum disease treatment refer to laser gum treatments, localized antibiotics and rinses, and systemic medications.
At Keith Bracy, DDS we approach non-surgical gum therapy in a serious, and thorough fashion. After careful diagnosis and consultation, we will determine if this gum therapy is right for you. Then our hygienist, Shirley Tam, RDH or Keith Bracy, DDS will meet with you to start treating one or two quadrants of your mouth at a time. You will be numbed up in the quadrant to avoid discomfort. After numbing, your gum pockets, teeth roots, and teeth are meticulously scaled with our TurboVue ultrasonic scaler, premium Hu-friedy hand scalers, and polished using anti-bacterial, fluoride paste. This procedure is unlike a traditional dental cleaning or prophylaxis due to the extent of the scaling and time allotted. It is essential that all affected surfaces of the tooth are cleaned so that all plaque, tartar and as many bacterial pathogens can be cleaned, even well below the gum line.
After the scaling and root planning, the non-surgical gum treatment is not complete! The patient is instructed on important home care instructions and further evaluated for other non-surgical therapies including antibiotic therapies and targeted mouth rinses. After about 4-6 weeks, the patient is then re-evaluated to see the results of the non-surgical gum therapies. Often, the non-surgical treatment produces excellent results and markers of gum disease are reversed. However, some patients need additional gum therapies if diagnostic markers of gum disease did not improve. Sometimes, the patient needs to see our gum disease dentist, called a periodontist.
Further questions about non-surgical gum therapies? Call Keith Bracy, DDS at 212-390-8399 to schedule your consultation in his West Village, Chelsea dental office. Reading a website or blog article on gum disease or dental cleanings is not intended to provide treatment advice, you must come in for your diagnosis and customized treatment plan. Don’t hesitate, call today!