Periodontology is the field of science that mainly focuses on treatment of gingival diseases which is the treatment of gums, jaw bone, tissues connecting the tooth and bone, and tooth root surface which are supporting tissues surrounding the tooth. The most common treatment method in this field is the dental scaling.
Impairment of Gingival Health
Healthy gum has a rough surface like orange peel, a pink color and proper shape. But gums may be impaired if the required daily care isn’t performed. It is quite easy to understand if the gums are healthy or not. A change in these mentioned characteristics can be the indication of a gingival disease.
Even though gingival diseases are quite common, they are not often considered as disturbing at the early stage and thus they are neglected. Failure to perform daily dental care with toothbrush and dental floss on a regular basis as well as visit a dentist regularly are the most important factors that lead to impairment of dental health.
Symptoms of Gingival Diseases
Swelling and redness are observed at gums and a bad taste and smell in the mouth at the early stages of gingival diseases. Bleeding in the gums while eating or brushing teeth is another symptom. Gingivitis, plaque-related darkening and recession, and sensitivity in the root surface that comes out may be observed as the disease progresses. At a later stage, problems such as prolongation, swing and tooth replacement might be seen.
Causes of Gingival Diseases
- Bacterial dental plaque is the main reason of gingival diseases. Food residues left on the teeth and between them pave the way for bacteria reproduction and cause bacteria plaque. As a sticky and colorless film layer accumulating on the teeth, bacteria plaque hardens and forms tartar when not cleaned properly. Toxins formed by the bacteria on this plaque damage and break down the tissues supporting the tooth. New plaque is formed at the space left by the gum that moves away from the tooth as a result. More bacteria accumulate in these pockets and advance by enlarging such pockets. As a result, the bacteria plaque that advance to the root surface destroy the bone support on the teeth, and teeth begin to swing. Teeth are lost at the end of this process.
- Stresses that are formed on the tooth surfaces due to grinding or clenching of the teeth (Bruxism) lead to destruction in the tissues supporting tooth.
- With the change in hormones in pregnancy, especially the future mothers with poor dental hygiene experience gingival problems.
- Factors such as stress, smoking, and irregular eating habits affect gingival health negatively.
- When the blood sugar level of diabetes patients that are not under the supervision of a doctor rises, amount of glucose in the gingival crevice increases, and bacteria flora in the mouth is affected negatively. Therefore, periodontal diseases develop more easily in diabetes patients and might lead to severe destruction.
- Genetic predisposition is also in the etiology of periodontal diseases. Risk increases even more especially in individuals with poor dental hygiene.
Precautions To Be Taken for Gingival Diseases and its Treatment
Gingival diseases both affect your digestion abilities such as chewing negatively and harm your social life with bad smell and appearance. Therefore, care must be taken about the things to do to prevent gingival diseases. Regular dental care and dentist visits are sufficient for the protection of gingival health. Gingival diseases can be prevented with the scaling process to be performed by your dentist and regular daily care to be applied afterwards. Surgical operations may be required in some cases that cannot be solved.
Precautions to Be Taken for Gingival Diseases
Gingival diseases can be stopped and prevented before progression thanks to daily dental care. Bacteria plaque must be removed from the teeth every day. Brushing the teeth and using dental floss everyday prevent formation of tartar to a significant degree. However, since gingival diseases cannot be completely prevented using personal care, visiting the dentist regularly minimizes the risk of gingival diseases and allows for protection of teeth for a lifetime. Dentists remove the bacteria plaque and tartar from the spots that cannot be reached using a toothbrush or dental floss, and provide a better oral hygiene. Dentists also prepare personal gingival care programs and help you in the selection of dental care products.
Treatment of Gingival Diseases
The main treatment method in gingival diseases is the scaling. Scaling enables elimination of tartar on tooth surfaces and thus achievement of a proper root surface. Especially at early stage, scaling followed by regular daily care will be sufficient for the teeth to readapt and pockets to disappear. However, surgical operation may be required at an advanced stage. The aim of such intervention is to remove the tartar in deep periodontal pockets and enable the shrinkage of gingival pocket. By this way, a more smooth root surface and more easy-to-clean gum form can be obtained.
Individuals that receive gingival disease treatment must visit a dentist regularly. Dentist checks should be followed for regular plaque check and scaling of tartar. It must also be noted that regular daily dental care performed correctly and without delay is the most effective method in prevention of gingival diseases.
Gingival recession is the movement of gum towards the root after the gum falls below the enamel limit from the place it is supposed to be. Personal reasons such as incorrect brushing and use of hard brushes are among the etiologic factors as well as presence of a gingival disease due to incorrectly performed crowns and fillings. Crowding can be listed as a hereditary reason. Treatment of gingival recession that can be observed at all ages starts with the elimination of reason that causes recession. Oral hygiene must be provided using a medium-hard brush two times a day. Dentist must be visited once in every six months; scaling must be performed if required in these routine checks and gingival compliance of fillings and crowns must be checked.
Once gingival recession occurs, gums do not move back to their previous position! Therefore, gingival recession treatment must not be delayed. In severe recession cases, operations are performed to cover the gums if possible. Treatment may not be possible if it is too late.
Smiling is our most valuable accessory! It is the most important key to self-confidence. Therefore, it is important to have a beautiful smile in today’s society. As is referred in its name, gummy smile means that smiling line is over the gums, so gums are seen excessively while smiling. This unaesthetic condition can be fixed with an easy surgical operation called “pink aesthetics” in dentistry or Botox application. Aesthetics can be supported by laminates on the teeth that grow longer after surgical operation.