Once gum disease has taken root, it cannot be cured, and that is why it is so important to prevent it from happening in the first place. Regular dental checkups with your Arlington Heights Dentist are vitally important to your gum health, as Dr. Engelberg can detect early warning signs, such as bleeding or irritated gums. At that point, our staff can perform a deep cleaning of your teeth and gums and instruct you on proper oral hygiene techniques to use at home, which include brushing at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day.
What Causes Gum Disease
Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease begins with plaque, a type of sticky biofilm that naturally forms on your teeth and gums. When plaque is left behind due to inadequate oral hygiene, it turns into tartar, a hard calculus that can only be removed with a professional dental cleaning. Tartar along the gum line causes the gums to separate from the teeth, creating a space for bacteria to accumulate. Known as periodontal pockets, these openings between the teeth and gums will collect bacteria and food debris, eventually leading to inflammation and infection of the gum tissue. Left untreated, periodontal disease destroys the supporting structures of the teeth, including jawbone tissue, and will lead to tooth loss.
How Gum Disease Affects Your Health
Gum disease affects your oral health in many ways, causing bleeding, pain, and inflammation. It is also the number one cause of adult tooth loss, which can affect everyday oral functions and cause damage and misalignment of your remaining teeth. Aside from the oral health implications, periodontal disease has been linked to several other conditions that affect your overall wellbeing. Among these conditions are heart disease, stroke, diabetes, osteoporosis, dementia, preeclampsia, and premature birth.
Gum Disease Treatment
In the early stages of gum disease, a scaling and root planing will clean and smooth the surfaces of the tooth roots below the gum line to prevent bacteria from accumulating. Dr. Engelberg may also offer you an antimicrobial mouth rinse or prescribe antibiotic treatments to help you fight oral bacteria. In more severe cases, laser surgery may be required to both clean your periodontal pockets and remove extremely damaged tissues so that your gums can heal and properly reattach to the teeth.
For exceptional restorative and cosmetic dental care in Arlington Heights, contact Dr. Brent Engelberg today. We serve patients from Buffalo Grove, Lake Forest, Highland Park, Palatine, Wheeling, Barrington, and the surrounding areas.