Dental Implants and Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease (also known as periodontal infection, gum disease or pyorrhea) is an ongoing infection in the gums around your teeth. The cause of periodontal disease is infectious bacteria that gets deep into your gums and causes tissue inflammation.
This infection starts destroying the bone that supports your teeth. If left untreated, it can lead to tooth loss. For more information, please see the section entitled "Periodontal Disease".
What are the symptoms of periodontal infection?
Because periodontal infection grows under your gums, you can have no symptoms at all. Patients with more advanced periodontal disease may experience some of the following symptoms:
- Red, swollen or tender gums
- Tooth sensitivity to heat/cold
- Bad breath
- Deep pockets around the teeth
- Spaces between the teeth
- Loose or shifting teeth
- Missing teeth
- Gums receding around the teeth (longer looking teeth)
Why is my dentist sending me to a periodontist?
Periodontists have advanced training in the treatment of periodontal disease and the placement of dental implants.
Patients with periodontal infection have a lowered resistance to periodontal bacteria. This causes a continuing gum infection that can grow in bursts of activity. Some factors that can cause a dramatic increase in the severity of your periodontal disease are:
- Genetic factors
- Poor oral hygiene
- Dental plaque
Two other important factors are:
- Lack of regular dental checkups.
- Lack of regular dental cleanings.
When your infection has a "burst" of growth, or when there are signs that this may occur, your dentist may recommend periodontal treatment.
How is periodontal disease treated?
Periodontal disease is an infection in the gums and jawbone. The goal of treatment is to remove this infection and prevent it from coming back. The specific treatment required to do this will vary with each patients' individual needs. After your initial examination, we will completely explain your different options for treatment.