Periodontology is the treatment of all the tissue that surrounds the tooth. This word comes from the Greek “peri” (around) and “odontos” (tooth). Accordingly, periodontology focuses on the gums first of all, then the ligament that connects the tooth to the bone and, finally, the alveolar bone on the surface of the jawbone itself.
Healthy gums are easy to diagnose:
Throughout the day, numerous kinds of bacteria found in the saliva attach rapidly to the teeth, multiply and produce a gel: dental plaque. When the gums come into contact with dental plaque, the body activates an inflammatory response, causing them to swell and turn red. Bleeding gums when teeth are brushed is a sign of gingivitis.
Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease. It’s totally reversible and only the gums are affected.
They start bleeding when the teeth are brushed.
Without rapid treatment, gingivitis will turn into periodontitis, from mild to severe: bacteria from dental plaque will gradually work their way in between teeth and gums, thereby increasing inflammation. This inflammation reaches the bone that supports the teeth and causes progressive resorption. Periodontitis is more commonly known as receding gums, as these are one of the first possible and visible effects of this bacterial disease. If the condition is not treated or detected at a mild stage and if it reaches severe levels, it can result in tooth loss and, ultimately, problems chewing.
Treatment of periodontitis is key to health. As a matter of fact, there is a link between periodontal health and general health, which is why preventative measures by the dental hygienist, a specialist in diagnostics in this area, are so important.
Tobacco use is the biggest risk factor for developing gum disease. Treating periodontitis requires several simultaneous measures on different levels:
The best way to draw up a treatment plan for periodontitis is to objectively measure, on the one hand, the initial situation and its evolution, and, on the other, the effects produced by treatment. Treatment usually follows this timeline: