What Causes Gum Inflammation?

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Everyone has plaque. It is a sticky biofilm full of bacteria that is constantly forming on your teeth. These bacteria release toxins that irritate your gums, causing them to become swollen and inflamed. This inflammation is not always painful, but it can be. Gum inflammation associated with oral bacteria is called gingivitis – the earliest stage of gum disease. Left untreated, it can lead to more advanced stages and severe dental damage.

Inflamed gums tend to bleed easily, especially when you brush or floss your teeth. Although the most common cause of gum inflammation is gum disease, other factors can also cause it, including canker sores, irritation from braces, and ill-fitting dentures. Our periodontists can help you identify the cause of your inflamed gums and develop a treatment plan to address it.

A professional cleaning along with improved dental hygiene may be enough to manage and eliminate mild gum inflammation. For those with more severe inflammation, a deep cleaning and antimicrobial treatments can be necessary to control the infection and stop the progression of the disease. Call our expert in gum inflammation treatment in Los Angeles today to learn more about gum disease or to schedule your appointment.

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When is Pocket Reduction Surgery Necessary?

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Periodontal disease can cause the gums to pull away from the teeth, which allows deep pockets to form. Plaque and tartar can develop in these pockets and are impossible to clean, allowing the infection to destroy the underlying tissues supporting the teeth. Our periodontist in LA may recommend pocket reduction surgery to reduce the size of these pockets and improve the health of the gums.

You may need pocket reduction surgery if you:

• Have developed deep pockets between your teeth and gums
• Are unable to keep your teeth clean due to the size of your periodontal pockets
• Are at risk of suffering bone or tooth loss due to periodontal disease

During this common procedure, the periodontal pockets will be thoroughly cleaned using special tools. Next, the roots will be smoothed to ensure the gums can reattach properly. Finally, the gum tissue will be tightened around the teeth and sutured so that they can heal in the proper position. This typically results in a significant reduction in pocket depth and improvement in overall oral health.

Call our expert in periodontal pocket reduction surgery in LA today to find out more or to schedule a complete periodontal evaluation.

What is Gum Grafting?

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In later stages of periodontal disease, gums can pull away from teeth, leaving the roots exposed and vulnerable. The damage of gum disease cannot be reversed, but gum grafting may be used to restore lost tissue and reduce the risk of damage to the tooth roots or tooth loss.

A gum graft is a procedure in which tissues are grafted over the exposed roots of the tooth. This tissue is often taken from the palate or an area of healthy gum tissue. If you do not have enough healthy tissue for a graft, donor tissue or synthetic materials can be used to regenerate new gum tissue. A gum graft can be performed on one or more teeth depending on your condition and needs.

Most patients will recover quickly, but some pain and discomfort are normal. You might need to adjust your diet for a few days to avoid disrupting the healing tissues. Additionally, you will need to take special precautions while brushing and flossing to maintain the integrity of the graft sites.

If you suffer from periodontitis and have suffered extensive gum recession, you might be a candidate for a gum graft. Call our office today to schedule your appointment with our Los Angeles periodontist.

Questions to Ask Yourself if You Think You Suffer from Gum Disease

Young happy caucasian woman nakedGum disease is an infection that attacks the tissues that surround the teeth. Also called periodontal disease, the infection typically starts at the gum line where the teeth meet the gums. In the earliest stage, which is known as gingivitis, gums can look swollen and inflamed, but in more advanced cases of periodontitis, gums and the other supporting tissues can be damaged and destroyed, leading to tooth and bone loss.

If you suspect that you might have gingivitis or periodontitis, ask yourself a few questions, including:

1. Do my gums bleed for no reason or when I am brushing or flossing my teeth?
2. Do my teeth look longer, or are the roots becoming visible?
3. Is my breath always bad no matter what I do? Do I have a bad taste in my mouth?
4. Are my gums red or puffy, or do they look swollen or shiny?
5. Do my gums feel tender or sore?
6. Do I have new gaps between my teeth, or are any of my teeth loose?
7. Does my bite feel different?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, you might have periodontal disease. Call our Los Angeles periodontics expert today to learn more or to schedule your complete periodontal evaluation.

Surgery for Treating Gum Disease

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Gum disease can often be managed with noninvasive therapies, but in some cases, the damage is extensive enough that surgery is necessary. If our periodontists in Los Angeles recommend surgery for treating your gum disease, there may be several options available depending on your needs.

1. Periodontal pocket reduction
When gums become irritated, they begin to pull away from the teeth, forming pockets. These pockets gradually fill with plaque and tartar, which can push the gums even further from the teeth. Periodontal pockets can be virtually impossible to keep clean, but pocket reduction surgery can help tighten the tissue around the teeth again.

2. Lost gum tissue or exposed roots
Over time, gums will pull away from teeth so much that roots can be exposed, which can lead to root decay and sensitivity. Gum grafts can restore the lost tissue and protect your teeth.

3. Lost bone tissue
If the bacteria and inflammation reach the bone that supports the tooth, the bone can become damaged. Restoring lost bone tissue is critical to protecting your long-term dental and general health. Bone tissue can be taken from other areas and fused to the area.

Call our gum surgeon in Los Angeles today to learn more about gum disease surgery or to schedule your appointment with our team.