Gum disease is one of the most common issues seen by Dr. Henley at Armbrust Dental. It is an infection of the gums and bone that hold your teeth in place. This infection, along with your body’s natural inflammatory response, will cause the gum and bone to break down such that teeth become mobile and are eventually lost. Insidious in nature, gum disease is rarely painful and, in some cases, takes months or even years before you may become aware of a problem.
Gum disease is caused by the bacteria in plaque. As the disease progresses and more damage is done, research shows that the type and amount of bacteria will change with the course of the disease.
Do you have gum disease?
You may be completely unaware that you have the early form of gum disease, gingivitis, as overt problems usually don’t surface until the disease has progressed to the advanced stage of periodontitis.
If you do show symptoms of gingivitis, the most typical are chronic bad breath, gums that bleed easily to the touch, red swollen-looking gums, and in some cases gums that are tender or sore to the touch.
Periodontitis often occurs with no recognizable symptoms to the average person. Signs and symptoms of periodontitis include pain on eating or brushing, red swollen gums, an abscess that comes and goes and/or drains into the mouth, receding gums, teeth that are loose, or teeth that seem to be shifting position or rotating, bleeding gums, and bad breath.
Periodontal Treatment with PerioLase®
Dr. Henley is licensed and trained in periodontal laser surgery known as LANAP (Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure) or LAR (Laser Assisted Regeneration). Using the PerioLase dental laser, we can treat even extensive periodontitis with no traditional cutting and no sutures! This means less post-operative pain and little to no gum recession that is common with traditional gum surgery. The PerioLase dental laser is the ONLY laser approved by the FDA specifically for regeneration. What this means to our patients is that LAR can actually grow bone and gum attachment back around your teeth. Teeth once deemed hopeless can now often be saved and often with less pain and complications as compared to conventional gum surgery. Dr. Henley is but one a few dentists in the Omaha area who have been trained and licensed for LANAP and LAR.
If you’ve been diagnosed with periodontal disease and choose PerioLase treatment, you’ll be scheduled for two appointments that last about two hours each. Of course, this varies by the extent of the disease and amount of teeth involved, but we will determine this before you begin treatment.