Below is important information about our Colorado Springs periodontics services offered at Salcetti & Associates. If you suspect you have some form of gum disease, you are not alone. And help is right around the corner.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention discovered almost 50% of adults currently have some form of gum disease, or periodontal disease, or periodontitis. The rates increase with age. Gum diseases left untreated likely lead to tooth loss and other significant medical complications. It is not a medical condition to ignore. Fortunately, we can reverse or repair the damage caused by gum diseases. Of course, the sooner you receive treatment, the more likely you have an optimal outcome.
Periodontics, or periodontology, is a category of dentistry. It deals with the tissues and structures that support the teeth. There are treatment options, performed by a periodontist. Some are surgical and some are non-surgical. Schedule an appointment at Salcetti & Associates to learn what treatment is right for you. Give us a call today:
My gum graft was incredible. I was feeling very self-conscious about the receding gum on my front bottom tooth … and worried about it becoming worse. The outcome was amazing and more than I hoped. She is an amazing surgeon and a caring doctor. Gum grafts sound scary and painful, but in fact, the surgery is quick and the post-op is easy if you follow the simple instructions give by the doctor. Thank you, Dr. Salcetti. – Colleen Williams
What is periodontics? What is cosmetic periodontics? What are common patient concerns? What are patient satisfaction rates? Dr. Salcetti answers these questions …
Below are details about the periodontics we offer at Salcetti & Associates …
Surgical Periodontics, Implant Osseointegration:
The following are some of the surgical periodontal procedures that are performed by Jeanne M. Salcetti, DDS, MS:
Dental Implants: This is the process of placing a post into your jawbone. Implants replace the teeth you have lost. This restores the function and appearance of your teeth.
Bone Grafting: This process helps you if your jawbone isn’t strong enough to house a new implant. In general, bone grafting is a minimally invasive procedure.
Sinus Lift Procedure: You probably don’t think about your sinuses, unless you are sick. However, the sinuses can be problematic with regard to the roots in the upper teeth. In a healthy mouth, this is no problem. However, when you are getting an implant in your upper jaw or maxilla and your sinuses are interfering, the sinus lift procedure can fix this issue.
Ridge Expansion: You might be a candidate for this procedure if you need dental implants, but your jaw doesn’t open wide enough. A ridge expansion basically serves as a stable foundation for implants.
Other Periodontal Surgical Procedures
Ridge Preservation: This procedure is ideal if you have had a tooth extraction. It is a simple process that allows you to keep the most bone possible after losing your tooth.
Cosmetic Periodontal Surgery: Have you ever heard the term ‘gummy smile?’ Well, put simply, a gummy smile means your teeth are unattractive or short. In many cases, even though it looks like your teeth are short, they really aren’t. Instead, the gums have grown up too high on the teeth. During cosmetic periodontal surgery, we correct this problem, revealing more of your teeth.
Periodontal Laser Therapy: This treatment uses laser dentistry to target and treat certain periodontal conditions.
Gum Grafting: When the gums recede, it leaves your teeth sensitive to temperature and creates other problems. A gum graft restores the gums to their correct height.
Frenulectomy: The frenulum is an elastic like muscle tissue that attaches between two teeth. When this tissue is too high and too close to your teeth, it can become a problem. It can cause gum recession in the area, and when it’s too wide, it can cause space to open up between teeth. The surgical procedure called a frenulectomy treats this condition. It is virtually painless, simple and quick.
Extractions: We always strive to retain your original teeth when possible. Unfortunately, sometimes, your teeth die due to a fracture or some other issue, leading to an extraction. An extraction is the removal of a tooth that is no longer viable.
Fiberotomy: This procedure might be right for you if you have ever worn braces. Sometimes, during orthodontic treatment, the gum tissue fibers stretch. Unfortunately, this can cause your teeth to become loose. The fiberotomy treatment cuts these overstretched fibers. New fibers will grow in its place, which will in turn stabilize your teeth once again.
Crown Lengthening: You might need crown lengthening if you desire a restoration or crown on a tooth but your restoration is too close to the bone. The crown lengthening treatment gives you access to the restoration once again. This procedure basically creates a new tooth-to-gum relationship.
Biopsy: If the inside of your mouth looks odd, you might have oral cancer. A healthy mouth will be coral pink in color. Any variation of this color can indicate a problem. The following are some symptoms of cancer growth in the mouth:
- problem swallowing or chewing
- hoarseness or sore throat
- thickening or lump inside your mouth
- sore in your mouth that isn’t healing and tends to bleed
- white or red patches inside the mouth.
If you have some of the symptoms above, a biopsy is used to detect cancer growth.
Exposure of Impacted Teeth: A tooth becomes impacted when it forms under the jawbone or gum. We can expose this tooth so it can be manipulated into place by an orthodontist.
Osseous Surgery: This is a procedure that treats periodontal disease. During this surgery, we trim away infected gum tissue. Any uneven bone remaining is then contoured. The surgery is needed when the pocket around a particular tooth isn’t responding to other methods of treatment, like root planning or scaling. The benefit of this procedure is the fact that it creates a better environment for a tooth and makes it easier to keep clean.
Guided Tissue Bone Regeneration: This procedure does just what you might expect from its name, it regenerates lost bone tissue and gum. The surgery uses bone grafts to correct bone defects and deficiencies.
Below are some of the non-surgical periodontal options used to treat gum diseases:
Root Planing and Scaling: This treatment option primarily involves cleaning the teeth. Scaling is when the root surface is deeply cleansed and smoothed. This removes all bacterial toxins, plaque and tartar from your teeth and your root surface. This isn’t a terribly painful procedure, but you will likely need some local anesthetic.
Antibiotic Therapy: This isn’t a procedure. It is instead the use of prescription antibacterial mouth rinse.
Bite Adjustment: If your bite is off, it can cause all kinds of problems, such as bone damage or even loss. In some instances, your bite can be adjusted to make your teeth function better. You might also have a bite guard made by your dentist to prevent damage from a misaligned bite.
Splint Therapy: This is a treatment option when your teeth are loose as a result of bone loss. The splint stabilizes the teeth.
Imaging & Diagnostics
At Salcetti & Associates, we have state-of-the-art i-CAT® 3-D dental imaging. We also have a digital intra-oral scanner. We evaluate and analyze critical anatomy for implants and oral surgery within minutes – right in our office. This technology allows us to do the following:
- precisely plan the placement of implants
- optimize bone grafting and sinus lift
- take three-dimensional views of vital structures such as the cortical borders, sinus wall, and nerve canal
- find other problems we couldn’t see on the surface such as tumors, cysts, other disease
Common Questions About Periodontics and Periodontal Diseases
Below are answers to several questions people ask about gum disease, how it’s diagnosed, how it’s treated, and more …
What is Gum Disease?
According to the American Dental Association, gum disease, also referred to as periodontal disease, occurs when the tissues that support and surround your teeth become infected. Many people are unaware they even have gum disease, because it isn’t a painful disease.
What Are The Symptoms of Gum Disease?
There are some warning signs associated with gum disease. If you can relate to these symptoms, you need to seek professional help for your condition. The warning signs are listed below:
- an alteration in the way your partial dentures fit
- a shift in your bite, or the way your teeth fit together
- permanent teeth are separated or loose
- bad tastes in your mouth or bad breath on a regular basis
- you have ‘pockets between your teeth and gums
- gums are tender, swollen or red
- gums bleed easily
- sensitive teeth
- chewing becomes painful
What Are Gum Disease Risk Factors?
We have previously talked about how certain bad habits can put you at risk for gum disease. Although several gum disease risk factors are avoidable, some are not. Being aware of some of the following risk factors can help you keep your mouth healthy.
- Age has been known to be a factor in gum disease. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that more than 70% of Americans 65 and older have some form of gum disease.
- Research has shown that some people are genetically susceptible to periodontal disease. Ask us about taking a test that will identify these genes.
- Health issues such as diabetes, and some medications such as steroids, oral contraceptives, and blood pressure medication have been known to increase susceptibility to gum disease as well.
How is Periodontal Disease Diagnosed?
The best way to determine if you have gum disease is to see a periodontist like Dr. Salcetti. Specialist are better able to diagnose and treat periodontal disease like gum disease. Therefore, if you suspect you might have gum disease, act now by seeing a specialist as soon as possible.
How is Gum Disease Treated?
In general, gum disease is successfully treated via deep cleaning, root planing or scaling. If these methods don’t work, surgical procedures can then be attempted. You will learn more about these procedures later.
How Can You Prevent Gum Disease?
The key to prevent gum recession, and subsequently, the development of gum recession is to keep your gums healthy and your teeth clean. Experts recommend you brush with a soft-bristled brush twice a day, using the correct brushing method, which means brushing for at least two minutes in a 45 degree angle. In addition to brushing, don’t forget to floss at least once a day.
What Causes Gum Disease?
Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is caused by a film of sticky bacteria called plaque forming on the teeth.There are ways you can increase your chances of getting gum disease. The following are some common causes of gum disease. Make sure you avoid them if possible:
- not brushing your teeth daily with a fluoride toothpaste
- not flossing between implants, crowns or bridgework
- not replacing a worn out toothbrush
- certain medications that cause dry mouth, like diabetes medication.
How Can I Reverse Periodontal Disease?
Thankfully, you can reverse gum disease if you catch it early. The early phase of gum disease is called gingivitis. It is important to catch gum disease in this phase.
What Should I Do If I Have Gum Disease?
If you suspect you have gum disease, you should be referred to a specialist like Dr. Salcetti. Getting periodontics from a specialist will give you the best chance to reverse or repair the damage caused by gum disease.
The Comprehensive Periodontal Evaluation
A comprehensive periodontal evaluation (or CPE) is an effective tool to periodontal issues. It is recommended you get a CPE every year.
During your evaluation, Dr. Salcetti looks at the following for signs of periodontal problems:
- your bite
- your bone structure
- your gums
- plaque on your teeth and gums
- risk factors you may have
- your teeth
She looks for:
- attachment level
- bone loss patterns
- degree of mobility of teeth and dental implants
- endodontic/periodontal lesions
- furcation status
- gingival recession
- gums bleeding on probing
- quality/quantity of bone
- occlusal patterns
- other tooth or implant related problems
- pocket depths in gums
- presence of gum inflammation
- presence, degree, and/or distribution of calculus
- presence, degree, and/or distribution of plaque/biofilm
- proximal contact relationships
- status of dental restorations and prosthetic appliances
- width of keratinized tissue
She also discusses the following risk factors with you:
- cardiovascular disease
- other potential risk factors
Why You Need a Yearly Comprehensive Periodontal Evaluation
The American Academy of Periodontology recommends a comprehensive periodontal evaluation every year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47.2 percent of Americans over the age of 30 suffer from mild to severe periodontitis. Periodontitis is the more severe form of periodontal disease. More with 70.1 percent of people over the age of 65 suffer from periodontitis. If left untreated, you can lose your teeth. Furthermore, periodontal disease is often associated with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, respiratory diseases, and other chronic inflammatory diseases.
Schedule an appointment for a comprehensive periodontal evaluation today at Salcetti & Associates: