Periodontal Treatment

Does professional cleaning or removal of tartar cause loosening of teeth?

Teeth are held firmly by the gingiva and the supporting bone of the periodontium. Bad oral hygiene results in the formation of plaque. If plaque is not removed in time it calcifies to form a hard mass called tartar/calculus. Professional cleaning removes this tartar and arrest further destruction of supporting bone. However, tartar deposit often hold together teeth that have already been weakened by chronic gum disease and mask existing tooth mobility. Therefore removal of the tartar deposit at this stage may give a false feeling of teeth becoming loose. Nevertheless removal of tartar deposit is only the first step towards periodontal health.

What are the common signs of gum diseases?

Common signs are bleeding, red and swollen gums. Irrespective of the person's complexion, the gums should never be red, or be swollen. Persistent bad breath, receding gums, increasing spaces between the teeth, one or more teeth becoming loose, and vague aching, itching or discomfort around the gums are some of the other common signs.

Is gum disease the only cause of bad breath (halitosis)?

Gum diseases are the main source of bad breath; other causes include diseases of the sinuses, lungs, stomach and throat infection.

Why is the gums black?

The color of gums varies from person to person like the skin color. Black color does not indicate any disease. Only red gums indicates disease.

Chronic Periodontitis

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Chronic Periodontitis

Chronic periodontitis with pus formation and severe inflammation and calculus

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Chronic periodontitis with pus formation and severe inflammation and calculus

Smokers periodontitis with stains and calculus

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Smokers periodontitis with stains and calculus

Cancer in the corner of the lips due to smoking

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Cancer in the corner of the lips due to smoking

Periodontal Abscess

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Periodontal Abscess

Gummy Smiles

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Gummy Smile

Do all people require professional cleaning of teeth?

As keeping the mouth clean is not an easy job almost everybody need professional cleaning. But this kind of cleaning is essential particularly for those who are unable to prevent tarter accumulation on their teeth.

Does pregnancy cause gum disease?

During pregnancy some change in hormonal level in the body does occur. This causes the gum to be hypersensitive and therefore over react to any local irritation. Even in the presence of small quantities of plaque the gums get inflamed. Some times big localized swelling may form. A few weeks after the birth of the child when the mother's hormonal level comes to normal the periodontal condition usually returns to the situation that existed before the pregnancy.

Do children develop gum diseases?

Yes, but it is not common. However children with very poor oral hygiene do get gum disease.

Can gum disease lead to teeth problem?

Sometimes prolonged infection of the gums spreads to the tooth through the root apex into the pulp tissue of the tooth leading to death of the tooth itself. Such tooth requires both root canal and periodontal treatment. Why does the tooth look longer after surgical gum treatment? Gum disease left untreated for a long time leads to loss of supporting bone around the roots of the teeth. The lost bone is replaced by unhealthy soft granulation tissue, which although it does not reduce the mobility of the teeth keeps the gum margin at almost the normal level. During surgical gum treatment the unhealthy granulation tissue is removed that results in the collapse of the gum tissues into the spaces left behind by the granulation tissues. As a result the gums recede and make the teeth appear longer

How to keep the gums healthy?

By keeping good oral hygiene, having regular dental check-ups and a good balanced diet

Should we avoid brushing and flossing when the gums bleed?

Bleeding gums indicated presence of gum disease. As poor oral hygiene is the primary cause of gum disease one should realise that it is improper brushing technique and flossing was the cause of the problem. Correct brushing and flossing technique should be adopted, which should be supplemented by mouth wash.

Is there any advantage of mechanical brush over regular brush?

No, but they are helpful for physically handicapped patients.

What causes a tooth to shake?

Shaky teeth or mobility is caused by loss of supporting structures of teeth i.e. the bone. When there is Plaque and Calculus on teeth this leads to inflammation of gums. This triggers bone loss and hence mobility of teeth. Hereditary factors also play a role in early loss of teeth. Systemic conditions like Uncontrolled Diabetes can also lead to early loss of tooth.

How to prevent mobility of teeth?

Oral hygiene maintenance is the one and only way to prevent mobility and loss of teeth. Conscious and concentrated brushing, flossing and use of Interdental brushes help to remove plaque. Regular dental check up is necessary to treat any bone loss at an early stage.

Can bone loss be treated?

It depends on the type of bone loss and the amount of bone loss. Bone loss of less than half the root length can be treated by placing bone grafts to regain the lost bone. Mobility of teeth can be reduced by splinting them to neighboring teeth to aid in healing.

If food gets stuck between teeth what should I do?

Try to gently remove the object with dental floss and avoid damaging the gums. Do not use a sharp instrument. The best item to use is a plastic toothpick that has an angulated tip. If not successful in removing the object, visit your dentist. There could be a cavity which needs filling.

What is the cause of Bleeding gums?

Plaque and calculus are main reasons for bleeding gums. Some systemic conditions can also cause bleeding. But they are very rare. Bacteria in Plaque cause gums to swell and become soft leading to bleeding while brushing or pressure with fingers or tongue.

Blood found in pillows in the morning Is it serious?

This is only because of gum inflammation there is bleeding while sleeping. There is no worry. It just needs cleaning of teeth.

Is gum massage necessary?

Gum massage helps to strengthen gums and reduce bleeding. It should be done after professional scaling to attain the desired benefits.

When to use a mouth wash?

A mouthwash is a solution used as an adjunct to regular oral hygiene methods, like brushing and flossing. It helps to prevent plaque formation as well as to treat certain specific conditions like gum infections, bad breath, ulcers, etc. It supplements brushing and not replace brushing. It can be used in patients who are disabled and cannot perform proper oral hygiene and in patients who have undergone oral surgeries or trauma. Also used in patients with orthodontic appliances.

Why floss or use Interdental brush?

It has been proved that only brushing is not adequate to maintain good oral hygiene, as it fails to remove plaque and food debris present in-between adjacent teeth. This inter-dental area can be cleaned only by use of Dental Floss or Interdental brushes. Floss is used in areas of tight contacts between teeth and when there are no spaces between teeth. Interdental brushes are used when the space between teeth is large to remove food debris and Plaque

How are equipments and instruments sterilized? What precautions are taken for control of infection?

Cross-infection is the transmission of disease causing germs from one patient to another, or from the patient to the dentist, or vice-versa. This is prevented by Universal Precautions, so named because they are followed for all patients who are treated at the clinic.

Universal Precautions involves many procedures, the most important of which is Sterilization. All instruments are thoroughly washed and then treated to kill all infection-causing germs. This treatment may be in the form of heat or chemicals. Heat is generally applied in an autoclave - steam under pressure is used. Most metal instruments can be sterilized in an autoclave. Non-metallic instruments can be sterilized by immersion in chemicals.

Disposable items are those that are used once and thrown away. These include needles, scalpel blades, suction tips, napkins, glasses, gloves, etc.

Barriers are items used to stop infection from crossing a particular area. Your dentist routinely wears gloves, masks, eye glasses or face shields during treatment. These serve as protective barriers against the transmission of diseases. Gloves are disposed of after each patient.

Surface Disinfection is a procedure carried out after every patient. The dental assistant ensures that the dental chair and other surfaces which are contaminated are wiped with disinfectant chemicals.

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