When you have a routine dental exam at Miller & Miller Dentistry, you will also have an assessment of the health of your gums. We regularly check all of our patients for signs of periodontal disease, or gum disease, because of the critical damage it can do to your overall oral health. Under the leadership of our general and cosmetic dentists, Dr. Christian Miller and Dr. Matthew Miller, our dental team will document your gum health in your medical record. The Miller & Miller team does provide periodontal probing with a long, blunt instrument to gauge the extent (depth) of the pockets around each tooth to determine if you have any stage of periodontal disease.
Dr. Chris Miller and Dr. Matt Miller look for the three stages of gum disease from mild to severe. The initial stage is gingivitis, which is caused by an accumulation of plaque deep within the gum pockets. If not treated, gingivitis can turn into the second stage, known as periodontitis, which affects the bone and fibers that hold your teeth in place. The third stage is advanced periodontitis and the most serious stage of gum disease, which can cause teeth to become loose or fall out. To treat periodontal disease, Miller & Miller Dentistry offers periodontal treatment options based on your level of need. If you have signs of gum disease, contact our office in Plano, TX to schedule a private periodontal consultation.
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Gum disease in its earliest stage, gingivitis, is difficult to detect on your own, which is why it's important to schedule annual dental exams at Miller & Miller Dentistry. This gives Dr. Chris Miller or Dr. Matt Miller an opportunity to measure your gum pockets to diagnose and treat gum disease before it advances. As gum disease progresses, symptoms will include red or swollen gums, bleeding caused by routine brushing and flossing, a receded or separated gums, and persistent bad breath. In the later stages of gum disease, you may also experience discomfort while chewing, loose or shifting teeth, or sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. Make a dental appointment as soon as possible if you are experiencing any of these symptoms.
What to Expect
Your periodontal treatment will be determined by the seriousness of the affected gum pockets. If Dr. Chris Miller or Dr. Matt Miller gives you a diagnosis of gum disease, he will go over his recommendations for your treatment. For mild cases, scaling and root planing (SRP) can be performed to deep clean the pockets of the gums. In more advanced cases, an antibiotic may be prescribed in addition to multiple scaling and root planing treatments. Serious cases of periodontal disease generally need a surgical procedure such as regenerative (grafting) or pocket reduction, and you may be referred to a dental specialist called a periodontist. For the more invasive treatments, either Dr. Miller may offer sedation to keep you relaxed during the treatment.
Your recovery from a periodontal treatment can vary. For best results, you may need to make several appointments at Miller & Miller Dentistry to fully address your gum infection. Once your infection has cleared, you need to continue scheduling routine dental examinations and cleanings at Miller & Miller Dentistry. It's also advisable to keep a good at-home oral hygiene routine, which includes brushing and flossing. Dr. Chris or Dr. Matt may recommend a medical-grade toothpaste or specific mouthwash to use daily to decrease your risk of getting another gum infection.
Your Gums Are Important, too
Gum disease will simply cause destruction without the appropriate treatment. It is necessary to seek professional help as soon as any symptoms occur. At Miller & Miller Dentistry, we work with you to revive your gum health and prevent future instances of infection. To learn more or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Chris Miller or Dr. Matt Miller, contact our office in Plano, TX. Remember, your gums are important, too!