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Vancouver V6Z 2Y1
British Columbia
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Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease, most commonly referred to as gum disease, varies from minor gum inflammation to more serious cases that can compromise the gums, bones and teeth. The disease begins from the build up of plaque and bacteria in your mouth. Plaque can be removed with regular brushing and flossing, but once it hardens into calculus (tartar) the bacterium is now stuck up against the side of the teeth along the gum line causing constant irritation to gums and bones.

At early stages when the tartar is left on the tooth structure, the gums will be red and inflamed and will bleed easily to flossing, brushing or both. Gingivitis does not cause permanent loss of bone or tissues provided it is treated in a timely manner with a good dental cleaning and improved brushing and flossing with home care.

If still left untreated, the next stage is Periodontitis where there is inflammation around the tooth causing bone loss. The bone loss causes pockets of gum around the root of the tooth. These pockets then hold bacteria and food debris against the root allowing the bacteria and plaque to continue the disease process. Continued breakdown of bone increases pocket depth, and over time will cause loosening of teeth that in some cases may need to be removed.

Some other factors that contribute to periodontal disease are smoking, pregnancy (due to the hormonal changes), medication side effects and diabetes. In order to maintain good gum health, regular cleaning schedules can help to reduce these factors. Other Concerns of untreated cases is the risk that the infection can spread. Periodontal disease has been linked to increased risks in heart attacks or stroke. Dr. Kent and her staff access your individual needs to determine your prevention schedule. Patients are placed on a three , four , or a six month cleaning interval. This is determined by your gum health measurements collected by Dr. Kent and her hygienists. Any pocketing and,or bone loss that cannot be cleaned adequately daily by the patient will require more frequent cleaning intervals to prevent progression. Cases that cannot be controlled with the regular deep cleanings may need a more surgical approach to enhance the patient's ability to clean defects caused by periodontal disease.