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Periodontal Therapy – Blackwell, OK

Removing the Infection to Improve Gum Health

A woman pulling down her bottom lip with her index finger and pointing to her red soft oral tissue that is a sign of gum disease in Blackwell

Would you be surprised to learn that millions of adults in the United States have some form of gum disease and don’t even know it? Does it make you wonder if you might one of these individuals who are unaware of a possible infection inside your gum tissue? Before you move into panic mode, the team at Blackwell Dentistry wants you to know they can help. With periodontal therapy, they can use a variety of techniques to successfully remove the infection and ultimately, improve your oral health. Want to learn more about this common dental disease? After reading the following information, don’t hesitate to contact our office to schedule an appointment. 

What is Gum Disease?

A female patient holding her cheek in pain while meeting with her dentist

Gum disease is what occurs when bacteria accumulate in the form of plaque and tartar and begin to attack the soft oral tissue surrounding your teeth. This causes your gums to become inflamed, red, and even bleed when brushing or flossing. If left untreated, the infection can spread beneath the gum line creating pockets where bacteria and food can become trapped.

While it can be reversible in its early stages (gingivitis), it will require professional treatment should it progress into more advanced stages (periodontitis).

Symptoms of Gum Disease

Digital image of gum recession and additional tooth structure being exposed

Gum disease that is left untreated can wreak havoc on your oral health as well as your heart, brain, lungs, and other areas of your body. Although not all symptoms will appear in the beginning, it can produce the following:

  • Red, puffy, inflamed gums
  • Bleeding when brushing or flossing
  • Teeth that appear “long” as a result of a receding gum line
  • Bad breath
  • Jaw pain
  • Tooth loss
  • Bone resorption

If the infection reaches your bloodstream, you can be faced with cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, diabetes, and even neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s or Dementia.

Gum Disease Treatment Options

Digital image of a soft tissue laser removing infected gum tissue on a periodontal patient

Depending on the severity of your case, Dr. Neale will examine your teeth and gums before suggesting the appropriate form(s) of periodontal therapy to improve your oral health and prevent additional problems from developing.

Scaling and Root Planing

The most common form of periodontal therapy is scaling and root planing. This involves removing plaque and tartar accumulations from above and beneath the gum line (scaling) before smoothing out the tooth root (root planing). This is designed to encourage your gum tissue to reattach to the root.

Antibiotic Therapy

Dr. Neale may decide to use antibiotic therapy in combination with scaling and root planing. This type of treatment can be administered in pill form or as a topical gel that is applied to your gum pockets. By incorporating antibiotic therapy into any type of periodontal treatment, it reduces the likeliness for reinfection. This is especially helpful, as you will be required to maintain regular appointments (every 3 months) to ensure bacteria is not accumulating again.

Soft Tissue Laser Dentistry Treatment

Using a small handheld device, our soft tissue laser can remove unhealthy tissue that is the result of periodontal disease. Known for being quick and effective, the laser minimizes bleeding by cauterizing the area, allowing for tissue to regenerate and heal more quickly as well as a reduced likeliness of future bacterial infection.