What is Periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is a chronic inflammatory condition which affects the gums and underlying bone around teeth. It is caused by our body’s response to an imbalance in the good and bad bacteria in our mouths. This bacteria usually builds up in the plaque and tartar that forms on our teeth between dental visits. This condition has been seen in patients as young as 14 years old, but is more common among adults. Genetics and other risk factors can determine a person’s likelihood of developing this condition. It is important to identify and treat periodontal disease appropriately. Research shows that the chronic inflammation associated with periodontal disease can have a serious impact on the heart, lungs, bones, and blood-sugar levels. For pregnant women, periodontal disease can also have a significant negative effect on fetal development.
Periodontal disease does not usually cause pain, and is generally a silent disease process. It can cause many other dental complications if not treated promptly. Periodontal disease causes changes in the bone levels around teeth and ultimately tooth loss if not treated in the early or moderate stages.
Periodontal disease can have a
direct effect on your overall health:
Circulatory System Inflammation
Bacteria enters the bloodstream through the gums and can travel to other parts of your body. This can cause secondary infections and can contribute to diseases already in progress.
The body’s inflammatory response to periodontal disease can trigger other inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and kidney failure and can cause artery walls to enlarge.
Respiratory System Blood Sugar
The bacteria from gum disease attaches to saliva droplets that you inhale. You can breathe in bacteria when you inhale, increasing the bacteria in the lungs, and can cause pulmonary infections and respiratory problems.
Inflammation from gum disease increases blood-sugar levels and weakens the body’s ability to control blood sugar.
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Periodontal Disease Treatment
Unfortunately, periodontal disease is not reversible, however, it can be stabilized with appropriate treatment. Thorough home care and changing some of your lifestyle habits are very important steps you can take to positively influence the outcome of your treatment. The initial phase of treatment for periodontal disease is a deep cleaning (scaling and root planing). This treatment consists of two appointments. Your hygienist will complete one side of your mouth at each visit using anesthetic to ensure your comfort. This cleaning allows access to the space between the teeth and gums where bacteria has accumulated. During this procedure, the root surfaces are smoothed, which allows the gums to heal and prevents further progression of bone loss.
Once the deep cleaning has been completed, it is recommended that patients come to the dental office every four months to maintain the bone levels and prevent further progression of this condition.
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Your hygienist will administer an anesthetic to ensure your comfort, and use a special cleaning tool remove the build-up and bacteria from the pockets surrounding your teeth. Your hygienist will then smooth the root of the tooth to help prevent bacteria from adhering to it.
Once both the right and left side of your mouth have been cleaned, we recommend you come back for periodontal maintenance appointments every four months. With meticulous home care and regular dental cleanings, you can stop your periodontal disease in its tracks, and it can remain stable for the rest of your life.
Preventing and treating periodontal disease is key to overall good health. Let’s get there together.
February is National Children’s Dental Health Month (NCDHM)
Did you know that the rates of periodontal disease among teenagers has dramatically increased in the United States? Research suggests that this increase is due to many different factors influencing our immune system’s response to bacteria and our dietary and lifestyle habits.
Dr. Day loves teaching teenagers about good dental habits that can contribute to a lifetime of healthy smiles and improved overall health. We participate in NCDHM to help educate teenagers about healthy dental habits. We hope to inspire teens to start implementing healthy habits to keep their teeth for a lifetime.
By participating in NCDHM, together we can help teens to keep their smiles beautiful now and for years to come. Together with Nebraska Family Dentistry, we have prepared an interesting presentation to help teens to learn about healthy dental habits. This presentation is interactive and gets teen’s attention. Most importantly, it inspires teens to take good care of their teeth and keep their teeth for a lifetime.
Please let us know if you’d like our dental professionals to speak to your school during February. We would be happy to visit your school and bring an interactive presentation and handouts geared towards teens. Please contact our community educators if you’d like to arrange a school visit at 402-304-3549 or email at email@example.com
All teachers and educators welcome to use any of the materials on
this page at your school for any lessons related to dental health
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Coddington Dental is a proud member of Nebraska Family Dentistry. We’re one of multiple NFD locations, some of which are even open on weeknights and weekends for your convenience.
Each NFD team member is trained to go above and beyond to keep our patients calm and comfortable, so you can expect the same exceptional care from all of our sister locations.
Nebraska Family Dentistry has multiple locations!
Choose any location convenient for you.