Periodontal Therapy in Marietta
One of the most common diseases in America is also one of the single most common oral health problems: gum disease. According to research by the CDC, nearly half of all U.S. adults over 30 have an advanced form of gum disease known as periodontitis. Others struggle with a milder form known as gingivitis. With these two conditions taken together, close to 80% of America's adult population would benefit from gum disease therapy.
What Is Gum Disease?
As bacteria accumulate on our teeth, a filmy material known as plaque forms. Over time, plaque can harden into tartar. Together, plaque and tartar irritate sensitive gum tissue resulting in an infection. If it's not treated, the infection can spread. Early symptoms of gum disease are mild but include red or swollen gums and bleeding when you brush.
As gum disease worsens, the gums begin to recede resulting in pockets around the teeth. Gum disease can also cause bone loss and, eventually, tooth loss.
Gum Disease and Overall Health
Besides wreaking havoc on your smile, gum disease can also have an impact on your overall health. Research has revealed a link between gum disease and an increased risk of:
- Heart disease
- Respiratory ailments
- Low birth weight
If you're like most patients, you might wonder how an oral health problem like gum disease can have such a profound effect on your total wellbeing.
Simple—everything that enters the mouth has access to the rest of the body through the bloodstream. As a result, the mouth functions like a portal for the rest of the body.
The good news is we can help patients protect their oral and overall health through regular hygiene visits.
Addressing Gum Disease
In its mildest form—gingivitis—gum disease is completely reversible through a combination of frequent cleanings and thorough care at home. Periodontitis, on the other hand, isn't curable, but it can be managed with non-surgical services like scaling and root planing. Dr. Thornton may also use an antibiotic to help you battle infection, and you should expect to see us more frequently for cleanings.
Do you have questions about gum disease and how it's treated? Our Marietta dental team would be happy to answer them for you. Simply give us a call to speak with us. We would also be happy to schedule a periodontal consultation for you. Maintaining routine care is essential for enjoying a healthy, happy smile.