Oral health is known to influence an individual’s overall health. Maintaining optimum oral hygiene and health is easier said than done, as oral health concerns such as gum diseases can take a serious toll on the oral tissues. One of the most prominent gum diseases is periodontitis, which is characterized by certain severe symptoms such as the decay of the soft tissues, bleeding and discharge of pus from the gums, severe pain, and loosening of the teeth from their socket, which ultimately leads to tooth loss.
What causes periodontitis?
The adhered plaque and tartar on the surface of the teeth and the tooth roots are known to be the leading cause behind gum diseases. The microbes in the deposits feed on the food debris in the mouth and release harmful toxins in the process. These toxins are acidic and have the ability to erode the enamel and decay the soft gum tissues. Initially, it leads to a condition called gingivitis. If left untreated, it can turn severe and lead to periodontitis.
How is periodontitis treated?
During the initial stages, the dentist will conduct a thorough visual examination and determine the severity of the disease. A suitable treatment plan will be mapped out, keeping in mind factors such as damage to the gums, teeth, and underlying jawbone. The dentist gets rid of the plaque and tartar deposits from the teeth and root surfaces by procedures called scaling and root planing. This is carried out using an ultrasonic scaling device, which has a metal tip that vibrates at ultrasonic frequencies. It will be combined with a jet of water to wash away the removed debris.
Further, the dentist removes the decayed gum tissues using a highly-intense beam of the laser. The laser vaporizes the decayed tissues and instantly seals the wound underneath. This procedure is highly advanced, almost eliminates pain and bleeding, and requires no sutures to cover the wound. Healthy tissues are extracted from a different part of the mouth, preferably the palate, and grafted to the receded area. Over a few weeks, the newly grafted tissues fuse with the existing tissues. The medication would be prescribed to prevent the spread of the infection and enable the healing of tissues. Arestin is one such prominent medication, which is known to be highly effective in the treatment of periodontitis.
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