Saturday, December 4, 2010

Periodontal Disease Part 3 of 3: Treatment and Prevention

In last weeks blog, part 2 of the blog series, we discussed possible health problems and complications associated with periodontal disease including its association with heart disease, diabetes, pregnancy, and we also discovered that it can also be hereditary.

This week as we conclude this topic, we will discuss the prevention, treatment, and possible cures for all forms of periodontal disease.

First things first.. Is there a cure? Well, yes and no.. There is no magic pill or shot or mouthwash that's going to magically take it all away and that's it, no more gum disease. It takes work. Typically you want to make a dentist appointment right at the onset of symptoms. The earlier it is caught, the less invasive it is to treat and maintain. Of course, prevention is key here and it is as simple as brushing your teeth at least twice a day, flossing once a day, getting regular check ups, and by not smoking. Of course, for some people it won't be that easy, as this disease can be genetic, which makes the importance of regular dental maintenance even more important.

Treating gum disease can be tricky and quite pricey. For mild cases of gum disease, periodontal scaling and root planning may be used to scrape away tartar and build up, and then antibiotic irrigation is usually used. For more sever cases, antibiotics may be prescribed (these come in various forms), and sometimes surgery is required. Surgery might entail temoroary removal of sections of the gums to clean out infection, bone grafting, and even tooth restoring/replacement surgeries such as crown lengthening or dental implants for those who have already suffered tooth loss.

As you can see now, Periodontal Disease is no joke and it certainly is not something to ignore. Remind yourself that a healthy body starts with a healthy mouth! And go get a check up because most people who have it, don't even know it!

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