Periodontal diseases are infections of the gums that gradually destroy the support of your natural teeth. Dental plaque is the primary cause of gum disease in genetically susceptible individuals. If you suffer from periodontal disease your gums may turn red, swell, and bleed easily. If this irritation is prolonged, the gums separate from the teeth causing pockets (spaces) to form. Plaque can also harden into a rough, porous substance known as calculus (or tartar). This can occur both above and below the gum line. As periodontal diseases progress, the supporting gum tissue and bone that holds teeth in place deteriorate which leads to tooth loss.
We use the latest techniques and procedures available to help fight this disease. Treatment options depend on the stage the disease is at. Non-surgical procedures are available if caught early.
We offer other treatment options for esthetic and cosmetic solutions for individuals with irregular gum lines or tissue recession.
If caught early, gingivitis can be treated fairly easily and effectively. A small mirror and a probing tool is used to spot bleeding gums. The more spots that bleed, the more likely your gum disease is severe. Hard mineral deposits (tartar) above and below the gum line are a problem area that is usually addressed during this treatment, as are areas where your gums are pulling away from your teeth and pockets have formed between your teeth and gums. Deeper pockets indicate severe gum disease. X-rays of your teeth may be taken to look for bone damage and other problems. We are in a unique position to catch gum disease early during regular check-ups and quickly move to a periodontal treatment plan that suits each patients needs.
Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical procedure to remove calcified deposits on roots of teeth. These deposits harbor bacteria and are directly related to the initiation and progression of bone loss and periodontal disease. In many instances this procedure is performed under local anesthesia along with conscious I.V. sedation. Dr. Gaspari will use specially designed instruments that will slide between your roots and gums. Scaling and root planing may be the first step in treating moderate and severe disease. In many instances, surgery is necessary following scaling and root planing to prevent progression of periodontal disease, and correct problems that the disease has caused. This minimally invasive procedure may leave your gums feeling sore for a few days, along with temporary increased sensitivity to cold and sweets. Medications will be prescribed to help decrease the chance of infection and to relieve any discomfort.
Regardless of the thoroughness or frequency of brushing and flossing your teeth periodontal disease will continue to progress unless the pockets surrounding your teeth are reduced to maintainable depths. The progression of periodontal disease often goes undetected until the bone holding your tooth disappears (atrophy) and your tooth becomes loose and must be removed. The disease progression can be halted if treated surgically at an early stage. The procedure fills in the areas of irregular bone caused by the disease. The gum tissue is then repositioned and secured with dissolving sutures to allow better access to remove bacteria on a daily basis.
If your teeth look too short and your smile is too gummy or your gums cover too much of some teeth while leaving the others the right length, crown lengthening might be the solution. During this procedure, excess gum tissue is removed to expose more of the crown of the tooth. Your gum line is then sculpted to give you the perfect smile.
In some cases, receding gums cause the tooth root to become exposed, which makes your teeth look long and unsightly. Periodontal disease is sometimes the culprit behind long teeth and exposed roots. Soft tissue grafts and other root coverage procedures are designed to cover exposed roots, to reduce further gum recession and to protect vulnerable roots from decay.
Tissue grafting can help prevent many serious oral health problems, reverse tissue loss and save your smile. Dr. Gaspari can perform tissue grafting using a regenerative tissue matrix, which is harvested tissue from a certified tissue bank. This procedure used to involve harvesting a piece of tissue from the roof of your mouth to serve as the graft material. Fortunately today, technology has allowed us to use donor tissue to perform the same procedures with only one surgical site. This allows tissue to heal with less possible complications. Every patient is different so ask us about tissue grafting for any procedure you have on your gums.
Over a period of time, the jawbone associated with missing teeth atrophies or is reabsorbed. This often results in a condition in which there is poor quality and quantity of bone suitable for placement of dental implants. In these situations, most patients are not candidates for placement of dental implants. We now have the ability to grow bone where needed. This gives us the opportunity to place implants of proper length and width, and it also gives us a chance to more effectively restore esthetic appearance and functionality.
Dental implants have completely changed restorative dentistry. They are designed to provide a foundation for replacement teeth that look, feel, and function like natural teeth. The person who has lost teeth regains the ability to eat virtually anything and can smile with confidence, knowing that their teeth appear natural and that their facial contours will be preserved. The implants themselves are tiny titanium posts that are placed into the jawbone where teeth are missing.
The bone bonds with the titanium, creating a strong foundation for artificial teeth. In addition, implants can help preserve facial structure, preventing the bone deterioration that occurs when teeth are missing. If, like many others, you feel implant dentistry is the choice for you, we ask that you undergo a dental/radiographic examination and health history. During these consultation visits, your specific needs and Dr. Gaspari will address considerations. Your questions and concerns are important to us. Our team will work with you very closely to help make your procedure a success.
Learn more about dental implants and if you qualify