Periodontics is a dental specialty devoted to understanding, preventing and treating diseases of the gums. Specially trained dentists, called periodontists specialize in preventing, diagnosing, and treating periodontal disease.
Periodontists see cases ranging from mild gingivitis to advanced periodontitis. Common treatments include scaling and root planing, root debridement, and regenerative periodontics. Periodontists are trained to perform oral surgery and can place dental implants, as well as supportive surgical implants in the jawbones.
In advanced gum disease, periodontal pockets form beneath the gum line. These pockets can’t be easily cleansed of bacteria and tend to stay infected. Infections this deep into the tissue will cause pain, tooth loss and even destruction of bone tissue in the jaw. Once these pockets develop, deep root planing and scaling can arrest their development for some, but many people need more advanced gum treatment.
The treatment for this kind of periodontal disease in the past has been gum flap surgery. A periodontist would use a scalpel and to separate and fold back gum tissue to allow access to the infected and compromised deep gum tissue. This is a viable treatment approach. However, closed flap laser periodontal surgery is far less invasive.
Closed flap laser periodontal surgery can reduce the size of the pockets, remove and kill bacteria, while at the same time cleans the tooth roots and removes hardened calculus. Calculus is a rock-hard accumulation of plaque that irritates gum tissues and destroys tooth roots. The laser also gently heats deep gum tissue and increases blood flood to areas previously damaged by infection. Increased blood flow to the area encourages rapid gum regeneration that grows into the area where the pocket was, and over time fills that space back in with healthy tissue.
At Dental Wellness of Suffern, we offer the Solea® Dental Laser, a breakthrough laser dental system that allows for laser periodontal surgery and a host of other procedures to be carried out painlessly, with no need for anesthetic. Visit Dr. Sherri Alpert, DDS, and let her show you how easy great dental care can be.