85 Darby Road
Paoli, PA 19301
Periodontal (Gum) Services
Are your gums swollen and tender, or do they bleed easily when you brush your teeth? These conditions could signal early gum disease. If left untreated, the infection can destroy tissue that surrounds and supports your teeth, causing them either to become so loose they require extraction or to fall out. Our dental team at Koup Family Dental will help you manage your gum disease at all stages.
What is gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by plaque, a type of bacteria that constantly grows on your teeth. With proper home care and regular professional cleanings, plaque can usually be removed before gum disease forms.
If proper cleaning is not maintained, plaque can cause gums to become swollen, red and to bleed while brushing. When this happens, gums can pull away from the tooth, leaving spaces called pockets. Plaque is then able to become trapped in the pockets and not able to be removed with regular brushing.
This initial stage of gum disease is called gingivitis. If caught early enough, before damage to the root structure has occurred, a professional cleaning (prophylaxis) may be sufficient treatment.
When the pockets are too deep to be addressed by a regular professional cleaning and plaque is affecting the supporting tissue of the teeth, periodontitis can set in. In this more advanced stage of gum disease, the gums may pull away from the tooth. Bone loss, loose teeth, tooth loss are also possible, as is bad breath.
A deeper cleaning, known as planing and root scaling, plus ongoing periodontal maintenance may be required. Recent research indicates that gum disease can be linked to health conditions throughout the body.
Stages of Gum Disease
How is gum disease diagnosed?
With regular hygiene visits and oral exams, gum disease can be managed. Inspection of the gum tissue around the teeth leads to a diagnosis. X-rays also help detect gum recession. In addition, we also check to see how your teeth fit together when biting and for loose teeth.
We treat many of our periodontal patients in full at our office. In some instances, our patients are best managed by a partnership with a trusted periodontist. Our doctors have long-standing relationships with many topnotch periodontists in the area. We can recommend one for your needs, or we can work with a periodontist already treating your issues.
Common Periodontic Procedures Performed at Koup Family Dental
Charting and Probing
Charting and probing are the first steps in diagnosing periodontal disease. Our dental team will inspect the gum tissue around your teeth both visually and with a probe. A probe is a small measuring instrument that is placed between the tooth and gums to determine the depth of those spaces or periodontal pockets. This helps determine the health of the gum.
Our team charts each measurement, using this data to determine the appropriate treatment and for comparison to future measurements. Generally speaking, probing is a painless procedure we can integrate into your regular hygiene visit, if needed. We may also take X-rays to help further determine gum recession.
Scaling and Root Planing
If we detect deep pockets between your teeth and gums, a deep cleaning below the gumline may be necessary. Known as scaling and root planning, it is a two-step cleaning. Initially we remove or scale the plaque and tartar below the gumline. Then we smooth out, or plane, the roots of the teeth so that the gums can re-attach appropriately to the tooth.
This process may take more than one visit to complete and will usually involve some local anesthesia. Once completed, our team will schedule a follow up appointment a few weeks later to assess the health of the gums.
In some cases, once a scaling and root planing are completed, a patient can return to regular hygiene visits. Others will require ongoing treatment of the periodontitis, known as periodontal maintenance.
Periodontal disease is most often managed with periodontal maintenance (a regular deeper cleaning) as opposed to prophylaxis (a typical professional cleaning). Some patients require this deeper cleaning more often than every 6 months.
Periodontal maintenance also involves careful analysis of the health of the gums to monitor the state of the disease. Frequently, regular periodontal maintenance prevents the disease from progressing.
Please note that each patient’s ability to fight off and control gum disease varies, however. The disease can fluctuate over time, and many factors can contribute to it. That’s why maintaining a good relationship with your hygiene team is crucial for receiving the best treatment. Regular dental visits are an integral part of that treatment.
Make an Appointment
At Koup Family Dental we pride ourselves on providing what you need when you need it.
We are committed to educating you on your options and providing treatment that fits your personal needs, schedule and budget. We welcome questions and look forward to partnering with you as you make the best decisions for your restorations.
Our friendly and informative staff are ready to speak with you and schedule your appointment and to answer any questions or concerns you have.
Koup Family Dental Welcomes New Patients!
The best time to begin improving your dental health is now.
Your dental health, comfort and satisfaction are our top priorities.
Koup Family Dental
85 Darby Rd.
Paoli, PA 19301
85 Darby Rd.
Paoli, PA 19301
Monday 9:00am – 4:00pm
Tuesday 8:00am – 6:00pm
Wednesday 7:00am – 1:00pm
Thursday 7:00am – 5:00pm
Friday, Saturday, Sunday: Closed
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