You’re proud of the way you take care of yourself. You try to exercise regularly, you stick to a healthy diet—with indulgent snacks kept to a reasonable limit—and you try to get enough sleep every night. But did you know that lurking in your mouth could be bacteria that are not only harming your oral health but your general health, too? Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is very common. The disease ranges from gingivitis in its milder form to periodontitis in its advanced stage. Dr. Barry Holden provides gum disease treatment for his patients in Williamsport and State College, PA, in order to arrest the progress of the disease and restore healthy smiles.
Gingivitis is marked by red, swollen and bleeding gums. With proper brushing and flossing at least twice every day and regularly scheduled checkups with Dr. Holden, gingivitis can usually be reversed. Left untreated, however, gum disease advances to become periodontitis.
What are the Symptoms of Periodontitis?
Signs that you may need gum disease treatment include:
- Bad breath or a sour taste in your mouth that won’t go away
- Red and swollen gums
- Bleeding gums that feel tender when you eat
- Painful chewing
- Sensitive teeth
- Teeth that are becoming loose
- A receding gum line or teeth that appear to be longer
If you come to Dr. Holden with any of these symptoms of advanced gum disease, there are a number of treatments we offer in the office to help you fight this all-too-common disease. The first go-to treatment is root scaling and planing. This procedure does two things. First, scaling allows us to remove plaque and tartar (plaque that has hardened) from above and below the gum line. Then, planing reduces the rough spots on your teeth where bacteria can more easily cling.
For patients with more advanced periodontitis, there are additional treatments:
- Antibiotic therapy—Dr. Holden will place an antibiotic gel in the pockets of your inflamed gums in order to control bacteria and reduce the size of these pockets.
- Laser therapy may also be used to reduce the size of gum pockets.
- Surgery to remove tartar and ensure that gums fit more snuggly around your teeth.
- Bone and tissue grafts to help regenerate any bone or gum tissue lost to periodontitis.
- Cosmetic periodontal therapy may be necessary to improve the appearance of gums and teeth.
Regardless of which treatment Dr. Holden determines is best for you, you’ll want to maintain the results with frequent periodontal cleanings in order to keep the disease under control.
Call Our Office Today
For periodontal therapy that will prevent the more serious consequences of gum disease, schedule an appointment with Dr. Holden. With offices in both State College, PA, and Williamsport, PA, we conveniently restore smiles for people in Bellefonte, Lewistown, Huntingdon, Clearfield, Lock Haven, Bloomsburg, Altoona, Danville, and the surrounding areas.