Non-Surgical Gum Treatment
The area of dentistry that deals with non-surgical gum therapy is called periodontics. Periodontists concern themselves with the area around the teeth, called the periodontium. The periodontium is composed not just of the gums, but also the gums and ligaments around the teeth. When these areas are unhealthy, it can damage the teeth in the same way as a cracked foundation can damage a house.
- Do your gums look red?
- Do they bleed easily?
- Are you always worried about bad breath?
- Are there gaps between your gums and your teeth?
- Have there been any changes in the position of your teeth?
- Have you noticed any changes in your bite?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, relax. Non-surgical periodontal treatment can help restore your gums to their pink, peak condition.
The goal of non-surgical gum treatment
No matter where you live or how carefully you look after your teeth and gums, the human mouth is a bacterial growth factory. There are more than 1,000 different types of oral bacteria that leave a yellowish gray film called plaque around the teeth and gums. Left alone, plaque can harden into a substance called calculus or tartar, leading ultimately to bone loss. The goal of non-surgical periodontal treatment is to prevent plaque build-up. The best non-surgical gum treatment is a partnership between the patient and the dental hygienist.
Non-surgical periodontal treatment begins at home
An ounce of prevention beats a pound of cure and this is true of non-surgical gum therapy. There are more surgical options than there are non-surgical gum disease treatments. Surgical treatments are more complicated, invasive, expensive and painful than non-surgical gum treatments. This is a good reason to take care of teeth and gums at home and starts with a daily oral hygiene routine as well as cleaning and replacing your toothbrush.
- Your dentist will show you how to brush and floss your teeth. Chewing sugarless gum after a meal stimulates saliva production, which can help to reduce the amount of harmful acid produced by plaque bacteria.
Cleaning and replacing your toothbrush:
- Replace your toothbrush every three months or as soon as you notice the bristles looking scruffy. After using your toothbrush, rinse it under hot running water. Soak it daily in a solution of 3% hydrogen peroxide. Occasionally, place it in the top rack of the dishwasher for a good deep clean.
Types of non-surgical gum therapy
Root planing and dental scaling are two types of non-surgical gum disease treatment that you get from your dentist’s office. Dental scaling involves the removal of plaque and calculus from the root surfaces and the crown of the teeth. Root scaling is the process of cleaning plaque and calculus around the roots of the teeth.
Ongoing non-surgical gum therapy
A regular program of non-surgical periodontal treatment at the dentist’s office will help to maintain a clean, healthy oral environment for good dental health.
Drugs used in non-surgical gum disease treatment
Chlorhexidine is the prescription-only version of the over-the-counter drugs, Peridex, PerioChip, PerioGuard and other brands. Doxycycline, tetracycline, minocycline antibiotics. Non-Rx toothpaste containing fluoride and triclosan, an antibiotic used to treat plaque and gingivitis.