Bleeding gums, also known as gingivitis, are often a sign of early-stage gum disease. In this stage, Dr. Hudgens is often above restoring gum health with conservative measures. However, when your gum disease begins causing more advanced symptoms, including bad breath, gum recession, and inflamed or tender gum tissue, you may need periodontal disease treatment options to fully restore your smile from the harmful effects of bacteria buildup along your gum line.
Dr. Hudgens offers periodontal disease treatment options in our Charleston, SC dentist office. Learn more about our periodontal disease treatment options below.
Dr. Hudgens is an experienced restorative dentist in Charleston, SC. He has helped many patients restore their smiles from the harmful effects of gum disease using our periodontal disease treatment options. If caught early, gum disease can be treated with a thorough dental cleaning in which we remove any buildup surrounding your gum line. However, if your gum disease has progressed, we may need to offer you one of the following periodontal disease treatments via the scaling and root planing procedure.
There are four different stages of periodontal disease. The treatment plan needed depends on the severity of your gum disease and what stage it’s in.
This is the first stage of gum disease and the only stage that’s reversible. In this stage, it hasn’t penetrated the bone. Plaque and tartar build up at the gum line, causing irritation and inflammation. Many of the symptoms of this stage aren’t very noticeable, which is why it’s so common. Bleeding gums is the most recognizable. Call your dentist if you start to notice bleeding gums regularly. Diligent brushing, flossing, and possibly an antibacterial rinse can reverse gum disease in this stage.
Mild Periodontal Disease
Once it progresses to this stage, the bacteria attack the jawbone. Bone loss begins to occur because the bacteria are more aggressive. We can no longer reverse gum disease at this stage. We treat it using scaling and root planing. This removes the buildup of bacteria and other debris accumulated in gum pockets between the gums and bone. Smoothing the tooth roots allows the gum tissue to reattach.
Moderate Periodontal Disease
The bacteria continue to become more aggressive in this stage. Instead of just attacking the bones, it gets into your bloodstream. Your blood carries the bacteria and inflammation around the body, possibly causing issues in other areas. Like mild periodontal disease, we use scaling and root planing to manage the issue.
Severe Periodontal Disease
At this stage, the infection has completely evolved into disease-causing bacteria. Your gums ooze pus, and it’s painful to bite and chew food. You have severe bad breath and bone loss. If severe enough, your teeth become loose and start to fall out. At this stage, scaling and root planing are no longer enough. Laser treatment or gum surgery are the only options to manage the disease.
Scaling and root planing is one of the most effective methods of removing infected tissue from your smile while preventing future gum disease occurrences. Our team safely removes any infected tissue from above and beneath your gum line using laser dentistry technology. Root planing smooths the root surfaces, discouraging further buildup of tartar and bacteria and encouraging reattachment of the gum to the tooth surfaces.
Patients may also be advised to take oral antibiotics to completely eliminate infection-causing bacteria following the scaling and root planing procedure.
Oral surgery may be required to restore your smile if your gum disease has caused extensive damage to your soft tissues. Soft tissue grafts may be used to generate healthy gum tissue. Dr. Hudgens can work with you to ensure you get the care you need at any phase in gum disease progression. However, we always recommend that patients try to see us at least twice a year for routine dental cleanings and exams to avoid the need for invasive gum restoration procedures.
Schedule An Appointment
Are you experiencing the signs and symptoms of gum disease? If so, we recommend you schedule an appointment with Dr. Hudgens as soon as possible. Gum disease, in its progressed stages, can only be treated by a professional dentist and will often only get worse the longer it is left untreated. Please contact us for restorative dentistry care so that we may restore your smile.