Periodontal diseases are infections of the gums, which gradually destroy the support of your natural teeth. Dental plaque is the primary cause of gum disease. Bacteria found in plaque produce toxins or poisons, which irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, an inflammation of the gums. They cause the gums to turn red, swell and bleed easily. Gingivitis can usually be treated successfully with routine professional dental cleaning, followed by home periodontal maintenance.
If this irritation is prolonged, the gums will separate from the teeth, causing deep pockets (spaces) to form. Plaque can also harden into a rough, porous substance known as calculus (or tartar). This can occur both above and below the gum line which houses a lot bacteria in them. As periodontal diseases progress, the supporting gum tissue and bone that holds teeth in place deteriorate which is called periodontitis. If left untreated, this leads to bone loss and ultimately tooth loss. However, don’t be fooled as with periodontitis, bleeding, redness and swelling do not have to be present. Furthermore, pain is usually not associated with periodontitis.
In genetically susceptible individuals, periodontitis can result in the loss of more than one tooth.
Treatment of periodontal disease may involve treatment as simple as routine professional dental cleaning to complex treatment such as periodontal surgery. Many times, the early stages of periodontal disease are best treated with non-surgical periodontal therapy such as Scaling & Root planing. Even in severe cases, non-surgical periodontal therapy often precedes surgical therapy. This is done to improve the overall tissue quality prior to surgery and also to help limit the areas requiring surgery. Drs Wong and Cheng work hand in hand with Periodontist to prevent, monitor and control your periodontal disease.