Gum Disease at Smiles4OC, Costa Mesa
Gum disease is the general term for bacterial infection in the mouth. It begins with gingivitis; inflammation of the gums. Your gums may bleed when you brush or floss. They may look unhealthy – red, purple, or swollen. And they may be somewhat painful.
Advanced infection is called periodontitis. Now it has spread to the bones of your jaw which support your teeth. Bone loss from gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss. It can have serious overall systemic health consequences, as well. Uncontrolled bacterial infection is linked to secondary infections, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. Gum disease may prevent you from undergoing a necessary surgical procedure due to potential healing implications.
Anyone can get gum disease, and some individuals are genetically predisposed to it. Luckily, it can be prevented and treated.
Poor home hygiene which includes failure to brush and floss properly will result in deposits of plaque on the teeth. Plaque is a nasty, sticky substance composed of food debris, mucus, and bacteria. If not brushed away, it dries to calculus or tartar. Tartar builds up at the gum line and causes further inflammation. Regular visits to the dentist for cleanings and x-rays are critical to remove tartar or calculus and will keep the gums healthy.
It is easier, and less uncomfortable to prevent gum disease than to treat it. Prevention is the best way to avoid associated systemic health risks. Drs. Thomas Rolfes, Christina Do, Cary Dunne and Tim Rolfes are trained in the latest methods to get gum disease under control and prevent its further spread.
We begin with a thorough examination, cleaning, and X-rays to determine the extent of the disease. We use state-of-the-art laser procedures to sterilize the debris-filled pockets around the roots of the teeth and stop the bleeding gums. This process is virtually painless.
We will send you home with instructions on daily oral hygiene, which may include an anti-microbial mouth rinse like Peridex® (a chlorhexidine compound available only from your dental professional) to manage further bacterial growth. We will continue to take care of you and have you back for periodic appointments to monitor your well-being.