A periodontist specialises in treating the gums, bone and other tissue that surrounds your teeth. The most common periodontal condition is gum disease. Left untreated, it can cause tooth loss, bad breath and may even be linked to other health issues like heart disease and diabetes.
Untreated, gum disease can progress to periodontitis which is the deterioration of the gum tissue and bone that anchors the tooth, making it loose and wobbly. Tissue loss is permanent and is a major cause of tooth loss in adults.
What is gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by bacteria infecting the tissues surrounding the tooth, primarily as a result of plaque. Plaque sticks to your teeth, including to the roots below the gum line, where it hardens into tartar (also called calculus), which can only be removed by a periodontist.
Gum disease is usually a result of bad dental hygiene and the build-up of plaque. However, gum disease can also be caused by smoking, stress, diabetes, pregnancy and certain medications.
Symptoms include red, swollen or receding gums, bad breath, bleeding, pus and loose teeth.
Why it’s important to seek periodontal treatment
If you develop any of the symptoms of gum disease, it is incredibly important to seek treatment. At its early stages, gum disease responds well to treatment. However, if the infection continues to spread, it can permanently damage tissue and bone, and result in tooth loss.
There is also increasing evidence of a link between periodontal disease and other health conditions such as heart and pulmonary disease, diabetes, pregnancy complications and strokes. For example, research shows that people with gum disease are twice as likely to have heart disease.
What is the treatment for gum disease?
If the disease is in its early stages (gingivitis), it can usually be treated with deep scaling or prophylaxis. The dentist will also recommend ways for you to improve your dental hygiene to prevent a recurrence.
Once the disease has developed, it may be necessary to undergo a procedure called root planing. This is a treatment that is carried out under local anaesthetic and usually requires two appointments.
For more advanced cases, surgery may be the only option. This involves a specialised periodontic surgeon grafting tissue onto the affected area.
If you have already lost your tooth to gum disease, we can also fit you with the latest dental implants.
During a thorough consultation, our specialist periodontist will advise on the best treatment plan for you.
Initially, you could have gingivitis, which is an inflammation and reddening of the gums, which may bleed when you clean or floss your teeth. Plaque accumulates under your gums where brushing cannot reach it, where it hardens into tartar and encourages even more build-up. The greater the build-up of plaque, the more your gums recede, exposing parts of the teeth that are normally protected. You may notice that your teeth are more sensitive to hot and cold. Gingivitis and tartar can be treated by deep scaling by a dentist or hygienist, then need to be prevented with good oral hygiene.
Periodontal Specialists in Harley Street area, London
If you have signs of gum disease and are in need of periodontal treatment, visit our Central London clinic. Our dentists and hygienists will advise on the best course of treatment as well as the steps you can take to maintain good oral health. Don’t worry if you are anxious about visiting the dentist, we’ll always do our best to put you at your ease and make you as comfortable as possible.
Gum disease treatment Harley Street
We offer payment plan options and 0% private dental finance.