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Gum Disease

Our Services > Gum Disease | Invisalign

What is gum disease? Gum disease occurs in approximately 8 out of 10 adults, with symptoms showing up for most people around the age of 35-40. Some of the most common signs of gum disease are bleeding gums, red or swollen gums, bad breath, and loose teeth. Gum disease is caused by a bacterial infection between the tooth and gums. While healthy levels of bacteria in our mouth are necessary to break down foods and keep us healthy, these bacteria can grow quickly and easily overwhelm the balance of our oral health.

When these bacteria colonies grow to unhealthy levels, our bodies are alerted to the "infection" taking place in our gums, and react by sending white blood cells to the infected area to kill the bacteria and restore a healthy balance. The white bloods cells surround the bacteria and attempt to rid them from our body. The presence of these white bloods cells is the reason why our gums bleed, and is a sign our gums may be in poor health. Without treatment, the infection of the bacteria between our tooth and gums will not go away by itself. Over time, this infection, or gum disease, can cause the bone that holds your tooth in place to erode, causing your tooth to become loose. Gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss in adults. And it is completely treatable.

Why is treatment important? More and more research is linking gum disease with other serious systemic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes. When bacteria colonies are present in our mouth in unhealthy levels and our gums bleed, these bacteria are easily absorbed into our bloodstream where they can attach to fatty plaques in the coronary arteries.

What are the treatment options?
Treatment will depend on the severity of your gum disease, but can include scaling and root planing (where the dentist or hygienist will manually remove the bacteria and plaque that has built up between your teeth and gums), oral irrigation (where a medicated rinse is directed under the gumline to flush out and kill bacteria), placement of medication between the tooth and gum (such as Arestin or Perio Chip), Perio Trays (where a medicated gel is delivered under the gumline by wearing an FDA-approved tray at home), in some cases gum surgery, and of course regular dental cleanings.

What are Perio Trays? Perio Trays are a non-surgical treatment for gum disease. Using FDA-approved custom-made trays, antioxidants are delivered under your gums to eliminate the bacteria responsible for causing gum disease. The standard cleaning procedures for gum disease treatment (e.g. scaling and root planing) help remove plaque and tartar and help reduce bacteria, but unfortunately bacteria reproduce quickly and biofilms regenerate very easily, so it is difficult to control them between office visits.

With the Perio Protect Method, you can place prescribed solutions into periodontal pockets with an appropriately formed, customized dental tray between office visits to help manage biofilm. Oxidizing agents placed in the tray debride (chemically remove) the protective coating of a biofilm and its underlying layers. Your treatment may include the Perio Trays to provide chemical debriding and cleansing agents before mechanical debriding procedures to help reduce bacterial populations and thus reduce the risk of introducing bacteria into the bloodstream. With research showing the link between gum disease and other systemic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes, the Perio Protect method is a revolutionary and comfortable treatment option.

For most people following the Perio Protect Method, the placement of prescribed solutions into a periodontal pocket via a customized prescription tray requires only minutes each day. Patients describe the tray delivery as comfortable and appreciate its non-invasive technology.

What is the cost? The cost to treat gum disease will depend on the progression of the disease. Dental insurance typically covers a portion of the treatment. Additionally, some medical insurance companies may reimburse patients for the Perio Trays. We can help provide you with the proper information for this process. The Perio Trays typically cost about the same as a crown. The number of trays you may need for your treatment will again depend on the progression of your condition. We can customize a treatment plan for you and offer complimentary consultations.

Additional Information
Gum Disease
Perio Protect Method
Gum Disease Links to Heart Disease and Stroke

Schedule an appointment or complimentary consultation with Dr. Farr today to learn more about how periodontal disease can be effectively treated!

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