More Americans lose adult teeth to gum disease than any other cause. Fortunately, there are more options than ever for treating stubborn gum disease. Florida Smiles Dental knows that the prospect of surgery can be concerning to many patients, so here are the safe and effective techniques that we have used with great success.
Pocket Reduction Surgery
Pocket reduction surgery, or as it is sometimes called flap surgery, is our preferred method of remedying gum disease that has progressed past the point that non-surgical options are effective. This is an easy, outpatient surgery so that both your prep and recovery times are fast. During the operation, we expose your underlying gums by creating a tissue flap so that we can clean out the bacteria, plaque, and tartar that are causing damage. This damage is literally destroying the structure of the gums by creating pockets, weakening the internal strength of the gums. By pulling the flap tight, those pockets will be reduced so that bacteria have nowhere left to go. So long as you continue to brush daily, the bacteria will no longer be able to hide beneath your gums.
As periodontal disease progresses, bone loss is all but assured. Bacteria can cause just as much damage to your bones as they do soft tissues like gums. Bone loss is a serious concern, especially in older patients who are already prone to losing bone mass and density. With the gums already weakened and their connections to the roots of your teeth tenuous, a reduction in bone strength can be all it takes for teeth to start falling out. To fix this, we perform a bone graft, where we take a sample of bone from you or another source and use it to promote the growth of brand-new bone. Bone grafting is not a quick treatment, and it can take many months for your new bone to integrate with the old bone. Bone grafting can also help make you look younger, as the restored bone rebuilds your facial structure.
A gingivectomy is a lower-impact surgery that nonetheless can still be very effective at treating gum disease. In many cases, a gingivectomy is actually a cosmetic treatment designed to improve the aesthetics of your smile. When one has a gummy smile, removing this excess tissue to more carefully frame the tooth can make a big difference in the appearance of the teeth. This same technique can be performed to remove infected and diseased gum tissue. Usually, a gingivectomy is performed in conjunction with a non-surgical scaling and root planing procedure. Also called a deep cleaning, scaling and root planing will remove the rest of the bacteria and then make it harder for bacteria to grow in your mouth.
Do You Need Treatment for Gum Disease?
If you have gum disease, but standard treatments like professional cleanings or scaling and root planing have proven ineffective, then one of Florida Smiles Dental’s surgical treatment options may be able to help you. To chat with one of our periodontists, you can call us at 754-354-0363 today.