Periodontal Maintenance Therapy​

Restore Your Health

Prevent Tooth and Bone Loss

Periodontal maintenance therapy is specialized care to prevent the return of periodontal disease. Patients diagnosed with periodontal disease may begin with a scaling and root planing procedure to remove harmful toxins. The harmful bacteria that cause gum disease could return within three to four months after initial treatment. Accordingly, our dentist will schedule you for periodontal maintenance therapy cleanings every three to four months.

The removal of tartar and plaque above the gum line is essential to preventing gum disease from recurring. If not, the plaque turns into hard calculus buildup, which releases harmful toxins. The harmful bacteria will expand below the gum line.

Once calculus grows below the gum line, patients may experience symptoms such as itching, redness, and swelling of gum tissue. As a result, periodontal maintenance is necessary to keep the gums and bone healthy and free of periodontitis. To put it another way, periodontitis will lead to tooth loss.

Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing is a unique procedure for advanced periodontal disease cases. The first step in treating periodontitis is scaling a root planing procedure. Typically, our dental hygienist will use an ultrasonic cleaner to perform your scaling and root planing. The ultrasonic cleaner uses high-frequency vibration to separate the hard calculus build up from the tooth. 

The scaling and root planing procedure may take multiple appointments to complete. In most cases, your gums are returned to a healthy state. Future appointments will be every three to four months to maintain a healthier smile.

Post-Operative Recommendations: Scaling and Root Planing

Following your scaling and root planing procedure, it is essential to follow the recommendations of your doctor. Some of the suggestions may include:

––– Adhere to your doctor’s recovery instructions for the type of anesthetic used.

––– Limit your physical activity for the first 24 hours.

––– Do not rinse vigorously for at least the first 24 hours after surgery, as this may prolong bleeding.

––– Do not smoke for at least a week, as this also slows healing and increases the risk of infection.

Watch the video for additional tips following a scaling and root planing procedure.

Routine Dental Cleaning vs. Periodontal Maintenance Therapy

Prophylaxis or routine dental cleaning is a preventive dental treatment where a dental hygienist cleans and polishes your teeth above the gum line. The American Dental Association recommends regular dental visits, at intervals determined by a dentist. Most dentists recommend regular cleanings every six months. After all, its purpose is to keep gum disease and tooth decay from developing. 

On the other hand, periodontal maintenance therapy is the cleaning of your teeth above and below the gum line. Periodontal maintenance therapy is specialized care to prevent the return of periodontal disease. Typically, patients will visit our Metairie dental office three to four times per year for deep cleanings.

Stages Of Periodontal Disease

How Gingivitis Can Progress to Periodontitis

Gingivitis is the beginning stage of gum disease. Essentially, gingivitis is a mild form of gum disease. Often, patients will notice irritation and redness of the gingiva, the gum tissue around the base of the teeth. The tooth connects to your gums below the top surface of your gums that you see.

Food and other particles can get trapped between your tooth and the gum tissue. Good oral hygiene, which includes proper brushing and flossing, can reduce your risk of infection of the gums. Consistent, comprehensive dental exams from our dentist in Metairie, LA,  Drs. Jeffrey Gregson and Taylor Haddock can reduce your risk of gingivitis. 

Periodontal Disease Leads To Bone Loss

Periodontal disease often referred to as gum disease, is the development of harmful toxins below the gum line. Gum disease begins with plaque and tartar that turns into a calculus buildup above and below the gum line. Most importantly, periodontal disease can lead to the destruction of your jaw bone and tooth loss.

Poor oral hygiene is not the only contributing factor to gum disease. Some medical conditions that trigger host antibacterial defense mechanisms, such as HIV and diabetes, will likely promote periodontal disease.

Periodontitis, Advanced Gum Disease

Periodontitis is the most advanced form of gum disease. If left untreated, periodontitis can lead to gum recession, loss of bone, and tooth loss. Not to mention, periodontitis is connected to other systemic diseases.

Periodontitis is a grave gum infection that can jeopardize the health of your teeth. Thankfully, your Metairie dentists, Drs. Gregson and Haddock can restore your oral health. If you have suffered tooth loss because of periodontitis, Dr. Jeffrey Gregson can replace missing teeth with dental implants. Additionally, Dr. Gregson is experienced in bone grafting, which may be required before implant placement.

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