The health of your gums and surrounding bone is essential to the function and appearance of your smile. At New Century Smile in Midtown East, Manhattan, experienced dentist George Manthas, DDS, and his team provides effective periodontal treatments to help patients prevent and treat periodontal disease. To schedule your visit, call the New York City office to book an appointment today.
What is periodontal disease?
Periodontal disease refers to infections and inflammation of the gums and the underlying jawbone. It is caused by poor oral hygiene and plaque buildup. Plaque is a sticky substance primarily made of bacteria that sticks to the surface of your teeth.
The bacteria in plaque can destroy healthy gums and teeth. Regular brushing and flossing typically keep plaque at bay, but when you brush irregularly, plaque buildup can reach below your gum line where it hardens and becomes tartar.
Unlike plaque, tartar is more difficult to remove and doesn’t respond to at-home brushing and flossing. As plaque and tartar are left to sit on the teeth and gums, they eventually lead to gum irritation and inflammation known as gingivitis.
Advanced cases of periodontal disease can result in periodontitis, which results in pockets of plaque and tartar that form between your teeth and gums. Over time, periodontitis can deteriorate your bone structure, leading to tooth loss. Advanced cases of periodontal disease may require surgical treatment to restore the health of your teeth and gums.
What is scaling and root planing?
Scaling is a nonsurgical procedure used to treat the beginning stages of periodontal disease. When your gums are healthy, they fit tightly around teeth. Plaque buildup causes your gums to loosen, allowing bacteria to reach below your gumline.
Scaling is the process of removing plaque and tartar that has reached below the gumline. When performed during the early stages of gum disease, scaling can prevent further infection, inflammation, and help you avoid tooth loss.
To perform scaling, your provider at New Century Smile uses a specialized tool to scrape and remove the plaque and tartar. Dental scaling is followed up by root planing. Root planing is the process of smoothing the roots of your teeth to allow the gums to heal and reform a tight fit.
How do I prevent periodontal disease?
Proper oral hygiene is essential to preventing serious issues like gum disease and tooth loss. Routine visits to your dentist help keep plaque and tartar under control before they cause irritation or infection.
In between your regular dental cleanings, it’s important to brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day. The longer plaque sits on your teeth and below your gumline, the more damage it causes. If you think you need periodontal treatment, book an appointment by phone today.