Many people have a deep-seated fear of the unknown when it comes to visiting the dentist. Much of this fear is not rooted in fact, but a product of the imagination. However, it can often cause people to go very long periods of time without a visit. Sadly, when they eventually do go, they may have an advanced problem such as periodontitis. What can be done to manage this?
Why Problems Arise
Advanced gum disease is the product of poor care and attention and often bad dietary balance. A combination of sugary foods and drink and inattentive dental care can lead to a buildup of plaque, the formation of tartar and eventually diseases such as gingivitis and periodontitis.
What's the Extent?
When a patient presents him or herself to the dentist with this condition a full analysis will initially be done. Gingivitis is something that can be reversed relatively easily through much better home care and often with a scale and polish by the hygienist.
If the condition has already developed into periodontitis it requires a little more work in the dentist's chair. This type of disease has a tendency to attack the bone surrounding the teeth as well and with a less stable foundation, tooth loss can occur.
Root Planing Technique
One of the ways that this can be reversed is through a process known as root planing. Think of this as a very comprehensive "deep" cleaning by the hygienist. The difference here is that the area around the roots of the teeth have to be cleaned, rather than the area immediately around the gum line. To do this you will probably be given some local anaesthetic for comfort. The hygienist will need to work beneath the gum line to a certain extent and sometimes down as far as the roots, in order to remove the hardened bacteria that has built up.
Technology today allows the hygienist to use ultrasound to break up the most stubborn deposits quite easily. Once this has been done what iremains can be removed using the standard dental equipment.
Depending on the severity of the problem you may need more than one visit to the hygienist in order to get rid of the buildup throughout your entire mouth.
Note that a certain amount of sensitivity can be expected as well and very hot or cold food and drink should be avoided for a short time. You may also benefit from over-the-counter pain medication to manage any mild after-effects.
While periodontitis is an advanced condition, it can still be treated. The sooner that you schedule a trip to the dentist, the sooner the problem can be dealt with.
As a mum, I know how essential sport can be to children's development. Through team sports like soccer, kids learn persistence, sportsmanship and the value of supporting their team members. However, all that learning carries some risk as well, and a stray elbow or a ball to the face can result in oral injuries. I have been the mum rushing to the emergency room with a precious permanent tooth sitting in a cup of milk. Admittedly, at the time, I wasn't even sure if the cup of milk was the right solution. As a parent, you will face those situations, and I'm here to make sure you know what to do when they pop up. With this blog, let's explore children's dentistry and sports injuries together... I want you to have the info you need to stay cool, calm and collected, regardless of how many teeth are on the pitch.