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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that almost half of all Americans have some form of gum disease, which includes gingivitis, a mild form of gum disease, and periodontitis. Gingivitis is reversible if caught in time, but if it advances to periodontitis, there is no cure, only treatment to lessen the impact. If your gums look red and swollen, and they bleed when you brush, you may have gingivitis. While gingivitis does not always progress to periodontal disease, everyone who has an advanced form of gum disease had gingivitis first.
Poor oral hygiene usually causes gum disease, but genetics, smoking and stress are also risk factors. Some diseases, such as diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, can negatively affect your gums. Signs of advanced gum disease include receding gums and loose teeth.
Periodontics in Alpharetta is an essential service to keep your teeth firmly in your mouth if you have an advanced form of periodontitis. Gum disease is the main reason adults lose their teeth. If you’re interested in gum disease treatment, or you would like to change the appearance of your gums, contact our office. You can schedule a consultation and learn more about your treatment options. The best time to see a specialist is before you lose any teeth.
Why Would I See a Periodontist?
Periodontists are dentists who have received additional training after graduating from dental school. They are specialists in diagnosing and treating periodontal disease. Periodontists focus on gums and other support structures for teeth, which are just as important for a healthy mouth as good teeth. While many patients see a periodontist because he or she is a gum disease expert, periodontists do more, including:
Treat Periodontal Disease – You’ll want to see a gum disease specialist if you have moderate or severe periodontal disease. When plaque gets under the gum line, it releases toxins that will make the gums recede and damage the bone holding the tooth in place. Your teeth will become loose and fall out without treatment. You cannot remove the bacteria yourself, you need professional treatment to save your teeth.
Crown Lengthening – If you have a smile which shows too much gum, it can make your teeth appear too small. The procedure is done under local anesthesia, so you won’t feel any pain. We can remove excess gum tissue and give you a smile you are proud to flash. Sometimes, periodontists perform the procedure if you have a broken tooth and there isn’t enough of the tooth’s crown left to place a dental crown.
Gum Grafts – Sometimes, with periodontal disease, gums can recede excessively, exposing the tooth root. Periodontists can take tissue from your palate and place it on your gums, where it will grow. It’s a relatively simple and quick surgery and healing does not take long. Gum grafting is for aesthetics and to stop tooth sensitivity. Gum grafts also will protect the roots of your teeth from decay-causing plaque. In addition to benefiting your oral health, gum grafting and donor tissue gum grafting can also serve to improve the appearance of teeth that have lengthy roots.
Gummy Smile Surgery – Gum contouring can give you a more pleasing smile if your gums are uneven or cover too much of your teeth. We can help if you feel your smile shows too much gum. It’s a matter of personal taste, but many of our patients feel that if their smile shows too much gum, it makes their smile unattractive.
Implant Placement – If you’re considering dental implants, our dentist can expertly place the implant into your jawbone to create a secure base for the artificial tooth.
Oral Cancer Diagnosis – According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, there are approximately 50,000 new cases of oral cancer each year in the United States. It used to be most common in people over 40 who were heavy alcohol users and smoked, but this is changing. Sexually transmitted HPV infections are also a risk factor, increasing risks for younger adults as well. Our gum disease expert can take samples from your mouth and send the tissue off to a lab for a diagnosis. An early diagnosis could save your life.
Arestin Periodontal Therapy
North Point Periodontics is pleased to offer Arestin® Therapy: a highly effective, non-surgical treatment for periodontal disease. Arestin® is a prescription drug that when combined with other non-surgical therapies, can be placed in the periodontal pocket to deliver an antibiotic directly to the infected area in the gums. Arestin® uses unique microsphere technology that gradually releases the antibiotic, allowing it to work for more than fourteen days. The antibiotic kills the bacteria that cause gum disease and encourages both the shrinkage of the pocket and the promotion of healthy gum tissue.
Bone Grafting Procedures
North Point Periodontics offers a variety of bone grafting procedures designed to treat bone loss and restore your mouth to health. A bone graft can be used to recreate bone and soft supporting tissue that has been lost due to gum disease. This type of procedure is also referred to as regenerative surgery. It can be done using your own bone or cadaver bone. We can help determine which type bone will work best for your particular case.
Laser Gum Surgery
We offer Laser Gum Surgery for the treatment of periodontal disease. In our office, laser periodontics is utilized as an adjunct to traditional periodontal surgery. Utilizing a laser in certain periodontal procedures benefits our patients by causing less discomfort and a quicker recovery time.
No Surgery Periodontal Treatment
Scaling and Root Planing is an advanced periodontal treatment that requires no surgery. Scaling and root planing involves a deep cleaning to remove plaque that is trapped below the gum line. During this process, one of our experienced hygienists will remove the old hardened plaque (tartar) from beneath your gums and educate you on how to properly care for your teeth. At this point, an antiobiotic may also be prescribed to help treat the infection.
Comprehensive Periodontal Exams
Our experienced dentists provide comprehensive periodontal exams to check for signs of gum disease, oral cancer and other oral health problems. During an initial examination,we will thoroughly examine your gum tissue and collect data related to bone levels, pocket depths, bleeding points and overall gum health. This examination enables us to provide you with an appropriate diagosis, prognosis and treatment plan.
North Point Periodontics offers complete periodontal maintenance plans designed to help our patients maintain optimal dental health. Once your mouth is restored to health, it is important that you make a commitment to maintaining your dental health. This involves returning to our office on a regular basis so we can perform a periodontal exam and remove any plaque or calculus that has built up on your teeth and gums to prevent any further periodontal disease. We request that you alternate hygiene re-care visits with our office and your general dentist. Regular preventative care is the best insurance of your future oral health.
Pocket Elimination Surgery
Pocket Elimination Surgery is a treatment for gum disease that involves the surgical removal of deep periodontal pockets to allow for effective removal of plaque and calculus deposits. The experienced peridontists from North Point Periodontics offer pocket elimination surgery as well as a complete range of surgical and non-surgical treatments for gum disease. Our goal is to treat the disease that destroys gum tissue and help you achieve and maintain optimal oral health. Eliminating unnecessary pocket depth through periodontal pocket treatment increases the possibility that your home care regimen will be effective in controlling periodontal disease.
Ridge Augmentation is a periodontal procedure used to restore gum tissue that has been lost due to tooth extraction or tooth loss. If you have a tooth that has been extracted or has been lost due to decay, disease or trauma, a Ridge Augmentation may be needed. This periodontal procedure will ensure that the replacement teeth made by your general dentist will have the maximum aesthetic result.
If you need one of the above procedures, or other periodontal services, our periodontist in Alpharetta will ensure you’re comfortable. We offer sedation and anesthesia options, including laughing gas, to make the procedure stress and pain-free. If dentist offices make you anxious, please let us know. Our team excels at helping patients relax. Call us to schedule a consultation and learn more about your options.
How Do I Make an Appointment to See a Periodontist in Alpharetta?
Call our periodontics office today at (770) 740-0442 to arrange a consultation. We have many patients referred to our gum disease specialist by their dentist; however, a referral isn’t necessary. We look forward to meeting you.