Periodontal or gum disease can be a very aggressive and painful infection. If left untreated, it can destroy the vital periodontal structures which protect the teeth and will also maintain the attachment to the jaw. It is critical to treat gum disease early, as it can affect not only your appearance but your overall vitality.
Aggressive treatment is required in order to control the gum disease and to restore health and appearance to the tooth-supporting bone and damaged gums. This surgical measure is used mainly in moderate and advanced conditions.
There are many types of gum surgeries your dentist may recommend once you develop any kind of gum disease. The type of surgery will depend upon certain conditions and this can be discussed with your dentist. The most common cause of developing gum disease is when an excess of bacteria multiplies in your mouth and create plaque and your body is in a condition where it cannot fight the infection. Certain factors including chronic illnesses and medications can make a person more susceptible to gum disease.
If you have developed gum disease which is very advanced, your dentist will recommend you the best choice of treatment from the following.
- Referral – gum specialists are called Periodontists
- Regeneration – In this type, your dentist will fold back the gums and the bacteria will also be removed, which is followed by inserting bone grafts, tissue stimulating proteins or membranes in order to encourage your teeth to regenerate and fit around the teeth again.
- Pocket reduction – The surgeon folds back the gums and gradually removes the bacteria in the surrounding tissues. The gum tissue will be secured by the periodontist against your teeth thus preventing it from growing back on its own. This flap surgery usually accesses the deeper pockets of infection and would clean them. A three sided flap in the gum tissue is created by a periodontist with one of the sides attached to the blood supply. The periodontist can access deep periodontal pockets to remove plaque as soon as the flap is opened. This is followed by repairing lost bone or receded gum tissue.
- Crown lengthening – An overgrowth of gum tissue is removed from your teeth by your periodontist in this procedure and will thus make your teeth appear longer and more uniform. This procedure is used to treat gum disease and also for cosmetic effects.
- Soft tissue graft – A sample tissue will be taken from elsewhere in your mouth by the periodontist in order to attach it to your gums to replace the gum tissues which has been removed due to gum disease. Certain grafting procedures are required to obtain gum tissue from the roof of the mouth or elsewhere and attach where it is needed. This is used for cosmetic purposes as well as for treating gum disease as it covers the area where the root is being exposed.