According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 50 percent of Americans over the age of 30 have periodontitis,* the more advanced form of periodontal disease. In its early stages, periodontal disease is called gingivitis, with symptoms that include swollen, inflamed gums that may bleed during tooth brushing. If allowed to progress, gingivitis can turn into periodontal disease, also known as periodontitis.
How Is Periodontitis Treated?
Depending on the severity of the disease, there are a range of options available for treating periodontitis. Initially, a deep cleaning that involves scaling and root planing may be recommended to remove the infection and allow your gums to heal. However, if the disease is more advanced, a regenerative periodontal therapy procedure may be the most effective treatment approach.
What is Regenerative Periodontal Therapy?
A regenerative periodontal therapy procedure is used to reverse the effects of advanced periodontal disease. When the infection has already begun to destroy the underlying bone that supports your teeth, this type of therapy is recommended to:
- Remove bacteria from beneath your gum line
- Regenerate lost bone and tissue
- Reshape the bones that support your teeth
- Prevent future gum damage
Who is a Good Candidate for Regenerative Periodontal Therapy?
People with severe or advanced gum disease are usually good candidates for regenerative periodontal therapy. Common symptoms of advanced gum disease include:
- Red, swollen, or bleeding gums
- Deep pockets between your teeth and gums
- Damaged or loose teeth
- Pain while eating and chewing
- Receding gums
What to expect during regenerative periodontal therapy.
Regenerative periodontal therapy is typically performed under local anesthesia. During the procedure, the gum tissue folded back to remove the disease-causing bacteria. Depending on the degree of damage, membranes, bone grafts, or tissue-stimulating proteins can also be used to stimulate your body’s natural ability to regenerate new bone and healthy gum tissue. Eliminating existing bacteria and regenerating bone and tissue helps to reduce the pockets between your teeth and gums and restore your mouth to optimal health.
Periodontal disease and the inflammation that it generates within your body are associated with a number of serious health issues, including diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, and even cancer. Because gum disease is progressive, early treatment is always best. If you have symptoms associated with periodontitis, you may be a candidate for regenerative periodontal therapy. Contact our Alexandria office today for a thorough evaluation.
Karl A. Smith, DDS, MS
Phone: (703) 894-4867
2500 N. Van Dorn St., Suite 128
Alexandria , VA 22302