Regular teeth cleanings are essential to maintaining a healthy mouth. Everyone, including adults and children, should visit the dentist for a professional teeth cleaning at least twice per year.
Our hygienists are highly skilled and always gentle. They'll thoroughly clean your teeth and inspect the gum tissue around each tooth to verify bone levels and check for signs of periodontal disease (gum disease). Periodontal disease can appear in two forms - Gingivitis or Periodontitis.
The hygienists at our Perkins dental office are specially trained to locate, prevent, and treat gum disease. Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss for American adults, so it's not something you want to ignore. Gingivitis is the number one disease process affecting American children, but it can easily be prevented with proper cleaning.
Gingivitis is the mildest form of gum disease, but that doesn't mean it should be taken lightly.
Gingivitis is also the most common form of gum disease and is usually caused by inadequate bushing or flossing. Poor dental hygiene allows plaque buildup to occur. (Another term used to describe gingivitis is "plaque-induced gingivitis.")
Other factors that can cause gingivitis include: smoking, diabetes, stress, inadequate nutrition, puberty and other hormonal fluctuations, as well as certain medications.
Within hours of brushing, a thin substance known as a dental biofilm begins to form on your teeth. Whenever left un-brushed, this thin, sticky substance attracts more and more bacteria until it becomes thick enough to be known as plaque.
Plaque is the chalky film that gets left on teeth after eating or after long periods without brushing. The bacteria in plaque irritates your gum tissue and causes infection. Your body responds to this infection by sending cells to fight it, which causes your gums to become red, puffy, and inflamed. Gingivitis typically isn't painful, but it causes your to gums bleed during brushing or flossing.
Fortunately, Gingivitis is an easily reversible process, with regular professional cleanings and a solid dental hygiene regimen (brushing and flossing). With regular cleaning, gingivitis can be reversed and the gum tissue will return to its normal, healthy state.
However, prolonged time without the treatment of gingivitis can lead to a more serious and irreversible disease known as Periodontitis.
When left untreated, Gingivitis will advance to a more serious form of gum disease known as Periodontitis and at that point you'll wish you had done the simple tasks of brushing and flossing.
Whenever teeth aren't cleaned regularly, the dental plaque becomes thicker and eventually becomes tartar or calculus. Calculus can even form below the gum line, which causes the bone supporting the teeth to recede away. Once that starts to happen, the teeth become mobile or loose, and sometimes they'll even develop infections.
The toxins living in the bacteria cause gum tissue around the teeth to separate, which form gaps between the gums and teeth that collect even more bacteria become badly infected. If the disease is not treated in a short timeframe, those toxins continue to penetrate deeper, which causes even deeper pockets to form. That leads to even more bone being lost or destroyed.
The problem is that this process usually occurs silently without any pain or symptoms to alert you that there is a problem, until it is too late and the teeth are completely mobile and untreatable.
That's why it is so important to have regular cleanings to not only clean your teeth, but also to monitor your gum tissue before it becomes a serious problem.
If we do find cause for concern during your cleaning appointment, we may recommend that you change your oral healthcare routine or suggest different products for you to use at home. We might even suggest a deep cleaning and a maintenance interval of every 3 months, instead of every 6 months.
Our deep cleaning may include:• Scaling with a vibrating, instrument called an ultrasonic to remove tartar from below the gum line
• Root planning to smooth rough root surfaces where plaque builds up
• Antibiotic treatment to kill bacterial infection
Give us a call to schedule your six-month hygiene appointment and gum disease check up today at (405) 708-6644!