Periodontology describes the science of the periodontium and includes the diagnosis and therapy of periodontal diseases (inflammatory changes of the periodontium).
Gingivitis occurs when toxins penetrate the conjunctive tissue of the gum and is mostly caused by comprised dental hygiene. Infectious bacteria associated with periodontal disease can cause reddening, swelling and bleeding of the gums, especially recognisable when cleaning the teeth. Good oral hygiene, including sufficient removal of dental plaque and consistent visits of a dental hygienist can reduce the inflammatory symptoms of a periodontal disease significantly. In severe cases the inflammation of the periodontium can be a chronical disease. A preference of periodontal disease in the family history can be indicator for that. In these cases a long term treatment plan should be established with a periodontal specialist (periodontologist).
Periodontitis is a disease involving receding and infected gums. Unfortunately it is the most frequent reason for tooth loss in adults. Almost one of two adults suffers from periodontitis. It often goes unnoticed, since the chronic inflammation of the periodontium (dental root, gums and bone) often causes only minor pain. Typical indications for periodontitis are increased tooth mobility, gum bleeding or bad breath. Periodontitis is mostly associated with dental plaque and bad oral hygiene. Plaque carries a high load of inflammatory bacteria. The permanent presence of dental plaque influences initially only the gums (gingivitis) but consistently spreads further down the periodontal ligament forcing also bone infection. The result is recognisable bone loss, exposed tooth roots and increased tooth mobility.
There are different possibilities to heal affected areas depending on the gravity of the disease. Usually, the dental hygienist carries out a professional in-depth teeth cleaning in several sessions during a non-surgical therapy. In case of an advanced state of Periodontitis or if the non-surgical therapy fails, a periodontical surgery becomes necessary. Especially in more severe cases a periodontal surgery has to intervene to avoid further bone loss and to stabilise the periodontal tissues.
Tooth root exposure often causes tooth sensitivity and can result in continuous facial bone loss. To treat this medical condition, soft tissue coverage of the exposed dental roots is indicated. Therefore, a gingival transplant is harvested from a donar side either in the area of the upper wisdom teeth or the palate and applied where needed. The result is an improvement of dental health and often dental aesthetics. The dental roots are no protected by stabile gum conditions and the risk of progressing facial bone loss and root decay is reduced.
Dental implantology is a well-established treatment option in modern dentistry. The long-term success of dental implants has been well documented in the dental literature, reaching high long-term survival rates of implants. In rear cases inflammatory processes, in other words infections of the gums and bone around implants, have been observed, often described as peri-implantitis. If a dental complication at an implant occurs, a specialist has to evaluate if the implant can be still preserved. If the implant remains stable and mainly integrated in the bone a small periodontal surgical intervention and potential bone grafting could save the implant.
When you have been treated with dental implants in the past and observe lately increased bleeding of the gums or local pain around the implant, associated with recession of the dental gums, we advise you to see one of our periodontal specialists as soon as possible.
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