Laser Therapy in Periodontal Disease in Spring, TX
Located in Spring, TX, and serving The Woodlands, Houston, and the surrounding Texas communities, the dental office of Emily E. Graham, DDS offers laser therapy for periodontal disease to local residents.
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is a common problem that has far-reaching effects on your teeth and gums. In the most minor of cases, the gums are swollen, and you may notice some bleeding when you brush and floss. Without treatment, these minor signs rapidly progress, and you risk losing bone, gum tissue, and even your teeth.
Treating periodontal disease requires cleaning the areas below your gum line, and the traditional technique of using dental instruments can be very uncomfortable. Dr. Emily Graham offers laser therapy for periodontal disease treatment to help her patients feel comfortable and also improve oral health outcomes.
How Periodontal Disease Develops
Periodontal disease is an umbrella term that describes two specific conditions: gingivitis and periodontitis. Periodontal disease does not necessarily affect your entire mouth. The condition may be isolated to one or two teeth or an isolated area of your mouth. The disease can spread to neighboring tissues, though, so no matter the degree of the disease that you have, treatment is paramount.
Gingivitis is the initial stage of periodontal disease that is caused by plaque on your teeth. Plaque forms when bacteria, saliva, and food particles mix together into a sticky substance that sticks to your teeth. You may notice plaque on your teeth when you wake up in the morning. Proper brushing and flossing remove most of the plaque. If you do not follow good oral hygiene or avoid flossing, you are likely to leave areas of plaque on your teeth. The plaque then hardens into tartar, and brushing and flossing cannot remove tartar from your teeth. Tartar removal is the main reason why you should have your teeth professionally cleaned at least twice a year. Gingivitis sets in when bacteria grow below your gum line and causes inflammation.
Over time, the damage caused by gingivitis worsens, and you develop periodontitis. At this stage, you have so much tartar and bacteria around your teeth that the gums begin to pull away, resulting in “pockets” that are 3mm or deeper. Once a pocket reaches 3mm, at-home care is not effective in controlling bacteria and tissue damage. In an effort to kill the bacteria, your body breaks down bone and soft tissues. As this happens, your teeth are no longer anchored in bone. The damage continues to spread deeper into the bone and soft tissue, affecting other teeth.
Am I At Risk for Developing Periodontal Disease?
Everyone is at risk for developing periodontal disease, especially without following a regular schedule of brushing, flossing, and routine professional cleanings. Other factors that increase your risk are:
- Some medical conditions, such as diabetes and HIV
- Hormonal changes during puberty and pregnancy
- Some medications
- Substance abuse
- Family history
- Improper diet and nutritional deficiencies
Signs That You May Have Periodontal Disease
Some of the signs of periodontal disease are:
- Swollen, red gums that bleed when you brush and floss
- Tooth pain, either general or while eating
- Tooth sensitivity
- Loose teeth
- Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- Chronic bad breath
How is Periodontal Disease Treated?
Treatment for periodontal disease will control the infection around your teeth and prevent it from spreading to other tissues and bone. In order to eliminate the infection, you will need a deep cleaning. These types of cleanings are much more extensive than routine cleanings. Deep cleanings involve going below the gum line where the bacteria are growing.
The procedure is critical to restore the health of your teeth and gums and stop bone loss. When deep cleanings are performed using traditional dental instruments, though, it can be quite uncomfortable for patients. Laser therapy for periodontal disease reduces bleeding and is much more comfortable for our patients. Additionally, patients have less pain and swelling after the procedure.
Benefits of Laser Therapy for Periodontal Disease
In addition to restoring your oral health, laser therapy for periodontal disease also reduces your risk for other medical conditions. The bacteria that forms in your mouth can actually travel to other areas of your body. Good oral health thereby reduces your risk for heart disease, strokes, and diabetes.
- Greater comfort when compared to traditional methods for deep cleaning
- Less bleeding during treatment
- Reduced pain and swelling after treatment
- Laser therapy kills the bacteria in pockets around teeth, something that cannot be achieved with traditional dental instrument
What Should I Expect During Laser Therapy for Periodontal Disease?
Your laser therapy for periodontal disease is performed in two stages, and local anesthesia is used to numb the treatment area. During the first stage, the teeth are deep cleaned to remove tartar and some bacteria. Our dental hygienist carefully and meticulously works around each tooth to ensure that all substances are cleaned away. For the laser therapy, you and the hygienist wear protective glasses to protect your eyes from the laser energy. Next, a special laser fiber is inserted between your tooth and gums. Laser energy kills the bacteria and any damaged tissue. The laser energy simultaneously cauterizes tiny blood vessels to reduce bleeding.
Finding out that you have periodontal disease and need a deep cleaning can be intimidating. In some milder cases of periodontal disease, Dr. Graham may recommend a routine cleaning followed by intensive home care. If this is appropriate for your case, you will need to use a Sonicare® toothbrush and commit to flossing regularly. We may also provide you with periodontal brushes to more effectively clean between your teeth at the gum line. After six months, we will examine your teeth to determine if the periodontal disease is well-controlled. If not, Dr. Graham may recommend laser therapy.
Schedule Your Sedation Dentistry Consultation with Dr. Emily E. Graham, DDS Today! Please call 281-407-4561 today to schedule your free initial consultation! At the dental office of Emily E. Graham, DDS, we have a vision to achieve radiant smiles while building relationships based on integrity and commitment to our patients’ care. Our team of top-notch dental professionals recognizes that each patient has unique requirements and desires. Our services have improved the lives of people from in and around Spring and The Woodlands, including residents of Houston. We specialize in dental services for adults, children, and teenagers, and we are committed to helping you have the smile you deserve.