Let's face it - right now, a lot of us are spending a lot more time being clean. Of course, we're cleaning a lot more often in our homes, and our hands. However, when we are talking about serious cleaning, we're also talking about your mouth. We want your mouth to be as clean and pristine as possible. If you don't thoroughly clean your mouth, you open yourself up to all kinds of problems. The health of your mouth is directly tied to the health of your body, so it's really important to keep your mouth healthy. One of the ways we keep your mouth healthy is through periodontal maintenance. Let Zhou Dental Care give you some information about periodontal maintenance.
The Three Kinds of Cleaning
We keep your mouth clean and healthy using three different kinds of cleaning. First, we clean your mouth with the usual dental cleaning you get in our office twice a year. We use polishes and instruments to get rid of the plaque (which is the thin film that covers your teeth) and tartar (the hardened crust that is usually along the gumline). The regular cleaning you get in our office is called regular cleaning or prophylactic cleaning.
People with gum disease need a deeper cleaning, because their gums are infected. Gum disease is actually an infection of your gums that is caused by the bacteria you have living in your mouth. The first stage of gum disease, called gingivitis, is easily treated. You may notice you have red, inflamed gums that might bleed, especially when you brush or floss. Once your gum disease moves to stage two or stage three, we can stop the progress of gum disease, but there is no cure for it.
Deeper Cleaning and Periodontal Maintenance
If we have a patient who has gum disease in stage 2 or 3, we need to stop the disease's progress. That means we have to do a deep cleaning of your gum tissue. This deep cleaning is called scaling and root planing. Scaling and root planing is a serious deep cleaning. We have to remove tartar and bacteria along your gumline and underneath your gums. When we clean out the infection, we have to continue to deep clean your gums on a regular basis. This is called periodontal maintenance.
Periodontal maintenance is a necessity because once you are in stage 2 or 3 of periodontal disease, spaces (or pockets) develop between your teeth and gums. These pockets fill up over time with plaque, tartar and bacteria, so they need to be cleaned out from time to time.
Some of our patients have concerns about periodontal maintenance. They worry that periodontal maintenance will be painful. We would love to talk to you about managing pain and anxiety during periodontal maintenance. Also, our patients worry about how often they will need to have periodontal maintenance. This depends on your level of gum disease. Usually, people with stage 2 or stage 3 of gum disease need to have periodontal maintenance 3 or 4 times per year. While you have to have periodontal maintenance more often, the result will be healthier teeth and gums. If you have questions about periodontal maintenance give Zhou Dental Care a call at 503-282-3884.