A deep cleaning is also known as scaling and root planning or just SRP. This type of cleaning will be recommended for you if you have gum disease. Patients who do suffer with gum disease will receive this treatment before others to put an end to the infection and help stop it. When gum disease is active, it will result in gum inflammation, deep gum pockets, tooth loss, bone loss, and even bleeding gums. It is important that you make sure to seek out immediate dental care if you think you have gum disease, as the more it progresses, the worse it can become.
Gum disease is the broad term for the disease and there are two types. The first, which is the lesser of the two is gingivitis and the worse is periodontitis. Gingivitis occurs when there is a buildup of hardened plaque on the teeth, also known as calculus. When plaque is not removed properly and in a timely manner, it becomes impossible to remove it on your own and SRP is needed. Calculus and plaque are small clusters of bacteria that cause bone and tissue damage.
When the bacteria remain on the gums and teeth, it will eventually transform from gingivitis to periodontitis. Many patients live with gum disease and they never even know that they have it. When periodontal disease is present, the gums are deeply infected, and they can detach from the teeth. When the gums detach, pockets will form and the deeper the pocket is, the more advanced the disease has become. If your pockets become too deep, the bacteria can reach the bone and eat away at it, which can then cause your teeth to fall out.
Patients who are in need of an SRP may have already experienced some form of bone loss. If not, they will be at a higher risk for it and will need to be seen more often in our Thornton office to ensure their bone remains plentiful and healthy. Our dentists will need to determine how much bone loss has occurred and to do this, an x-ray will need to be taken. This will allow our dentists to look at the teeth, gums, and surrounding tissues to identify the damage.
Here at Thornton Town Center Family Dental, we believe that tooth extractions should be the very last resort and the primary focus should be to save the tooth. We will try to heal your gums as quickly as possible to save as much bone as we can. If a tooth or teeth cannot be saved, it will need to be extracted.
What to Expect at Your Periodontal Evaluation
When you come into our Thornton office for a periodontal evaluation, our hygienists will use a special tool and measure the pocket depth around your teeth. Each of the pockets are measured individually and will give us an idea of how progressed the gum disease actually is.
Patients will need to have an SRP done when the pockets are more than three millimeters in size. While a 3mm pocket depth is needed for SRP, this does not mean that any bone has been lost. However, a deep cleaning is usually done to prevent bone loss or further progression of the disease.
When you come in for an evaluation, your teeth will be measured in six spots. Your dental hygienist will take a specialized probe that has markings on it to indicate the pocket depth. The deeper the probe can go into the gums, the deeper the pocket actually is.
When there is a pocket depth of 4mm or more, it is considered to be gingivitis in the patient. Depths of five millimeters and more indicates that there is moderate gum disease present and depths of six millimeters and more is advanced gum disease or periodontitis.
When it comes time to have your pocket depths measured, your gums may be numbed to allow for the probe to enter without any discomfort to you. The process is not supposed to be painful, but it can be uncomfortable for those patients who have gum disease.
When an SRP is needed, local anesthetics are used. The lower teeth are usually done at once and then the upper teeth. You will need to come into our Thornton office for a total of two visits to have it done. You will also need to come into our office more often for checkups to ensure that you do not develop gum disease again.
Recommended Treatments for Gum Disease
Below, you will find two of the most commonly recommended treatments for gum disease.
Patients are often prescribed this when they have gum disease. It is a medical grade mouthwash that is used for 7 to 10 days after an SRP is performed to get rid of any and all bacteria that may be in the gums. The mouthwash will also prevent any additional buildup of plaque or bacteria. Peridex is also an antimicrobial that will destroy bacteria’s cells.
Arestin is another prescription that may be prescribed to you here in our office. This prescription is generally used for individuals who have pocket depths of 6mm or more. The medication is injected into the pockets and works to kill off the bacteria that is present. Each dose of the medication consists of a tightly packed powder that is placed into a pellet and then the pellet placed into the pocket. This medication is used to help your gums heal and reattach to the teeth.
Call Today to Talk About Gum Disease
If you think that you may have gum disease, or you think that you may have pockets in your gums, now is the time to call Thornton Town Center Family Dental. We are here to help you have a beautiful smile. If you would like to schedule a deep cleaning, do not hesitate to call our Thornton office today to make an appointment.
We Appreciate All of Our Thornton Patients!
Thornton Town Center Family Dental would not be as successful without the support from all of our patients. We are proud to be able to serve the local area and thank you for all of the referrals you have sent our way! Below, you will find some of our recent reviews from Thornton patients!
I had a million questions that I wanted to ask and they did an awesome job and answering every single one. And the staff do an awesome job at making me feel comfortable while they work on my teeth!
ALL the Doctors and staff are extremely nice and very professional. The office is very clean and modern. They have all the latest technology and every one seems very skilled at what they do. I recommend this place for anyone who needs good and honest Dentist!
The doctors here are professional and super friendly. They have a willingness to help and cater to thier patients needs. Visits are very quick, so scheduling is hassle-free aswell. Would we not be moving out of state, my wife and I would love to make Thornton our forever dentist