Treatment for periodontal (gum) disease has never been this easy or pain free!
Are your gums swollen?
Have bad breath?
Do your teeth bleed when you brush your teeth?
The Bad News: You probably have gum disease (Don’t feel bad. A majority of Americans do, too).
The Good News: It’s probably a mild case.
The Even Better News: Even if it’s not mild, there is a very successful, minimally-invasive procedure called Dental LANAP surgery that can get rid of the bacteria and restore your gums back to health!
So, let’s start at the beginning.
It is NOT normal to see your gums bleed when you brush your teeth! You would freak out if your scalp bled when you brushed your hair, right? The same thing applies to teeth.
If you experience bleeding, you probably have a bacterial infection in your gums. Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the teeth, gums, and bones around the teeth. It is the main cause of bone loss in adults.
How did you get Periodontal Disease?
It begins with plaque. Plaque, a yellowish film of bacteria, starts forming on the teeth. If you do not remove it by brushing and flossing properly and having regular cleanings at the dentist, the plaque hardens into tartar (a.k.a. calculus). When plaque and tartar build up under the gumline, the gums turn red, get inflamed and bleed.
But wait, there’s more!
If left in place, that plaque and tartar will cause the gums to swell. You now have a mild form of gum disease called gingivitis.
Aaaand … it gets even worse.
You did not treat the gingivitis. Now, it has turned into the advanced gum disease called periodontitis. Periodontitis causes the gums to pull away from the teeth and form pockets. Eventually, these pockets can deepen and the infection reaches the bone. The bacteria produces toxins which damage the bone and, over time, cause bone loss.
How can you fix periodontitis?
Traditional Periodontal Therapy
Traditionally, serious periodontal disease was treated by deep cleaning, which involves scaling and root planing. When scaling, a dentist or dental hygienist scrapes off the plaque and tartar, using manual hand instruments and/or ultrasonic instruments on the teeth and below the gumline. Root planing is when a professional planes, or smooths out, rough areas found on the tooth root which can trap bacteria.
Deep cleaning prevents the gum disease from worsening. It will not, however, reduce the pockets or reattach the gum to the teeth.
Flap Surgery for Severe Infections
If the infection is severe, dentists perform osseous surgery, also known as flap surgery, during which they pull the gum away from the teeth, roots, and underlying bone. The dentist then debrides (cleans) the teeth and roots and reshapes the bone. Finally, the gum is trimmed and stitched back up, leaving a narrower pocket than you had before.
Unfortunately, some patients have reported that these techniques made their teeth more sensitive. In addition, trimming the gum means it will fit more closely against the tooth, and may give the appearance of longer teeth. And due to the invasive nature of these procedures, patients can feel discomfort and experience bleeding and swelling. Finally, only a few sections can be done at a time so these procedures are time-consuming.
LANAP surgery: A more comfortable and efficient alternative
LANAP surgery stands for Laser-assisted New Attachment Procedure. It treats periodontitis by actually regenerating tissue.
Yes, you heard right. The gums will actually grow back with this procedure.
How LANAP surgery works
The dentist uses a digital dental laser to zap and destroy diseased tissue. The laser is extremely effective against bacteria and is such a precise tool that users can target the diseased areas and not touch healthy tissue. After the target portions of the pockets are destroyed, the dentist will clean your teeth with ultrasonic and handheld tools.
But what about the regeneration?
The LANAP technique promotes the regeneration of bone and tissue cells by activating “growth factors,” the proteins that stimulate tissue growth.
Benefits of LANAP Surgery over traditional “Deep Cleaning” and “Flap Surgery”
With LANAP, patients can …
- Regrow bones and tissue lost due to gum disease
- Feel less pain
- Experience less bleeding, less swelling, and less sensitivity
- Have less gum loss (gum recession)
- Recuperate faster
- Feel less anxiety
- Be less prone to post-op infections
- Save time
Sunny Isles Dental is proud to be one of the very few dental offices in South Florida that offers both LANAP Periodontal Therapies and traditional techniques. Dr. George and our team of professionals will make sure you are comfortable and confident with any of the procedures performed in our office. Contact us today at 305.330.6609 or through our online contact form and take the first step in getting those healthy gums back!