Oral health is essential for maintaining your general health. One common oral health issue is gum disease and periodontal disease. This infection affects the tissues that hold your teeth in place. It’s typically caused by poor brushing and flossing habits that allow plaque—a sticky film of bacteria—to build up on the teeth and harden.

In advanced stages, periodontal disease can lead to sore, bleeding gums, painful chewing problems, and even loss of teeth. Thankfully, the methods of prevention and treatment have continued to evolve, making it possible to stave off this disease effectively. This is where periodontic treatment comes in.

Understanding Periodontics

Periodontics is a branch of dentistry that focuses on the structure of the teeth and the diseases and conditions that affect them. This dental specialty recognizes the importance of the gums and other supporting tissues of the teeth. As such, periodontists undergo additional training after dental school to specialize in this area and provide advanced care for patients at risk for gum disease. When understanding the intricate details of oral health, the value of periodontics cannot be underestimated. To learn more about periodontics, consider scheduling a consultation with a specialist.

What Is Periodontic Treatment?

Periodontic treatment involves diagnosing and treating diseases affecting the tissues and structures surrounding the teeth. This may include the gums, periodontal ligament, cementum (the surface layer of the root of a tooth), and the alveolar bone. From simple non-surgical procedures like scaling and root planing to more complex surgeries such as dental implants or gum grafts, a periodontist can offer solutions to help prevent, diagnose, and treat gum disease.

Dental Plaque and Professional Cleaning

Dental plaque significantly contributes to gum disease. It’s a biofilm on the teeth of food particles, saliva, and bacteria. If not removed through proper oral hygiene, the plaque can harden into tartar, leading to inflammation of the gums and potential gum disease.

Professional dental cleanings help remove plaque and tartar, particularly in places that are hard to reach with a regular toothbrush or floss. Regular check-ups with a periodontist or oral hygienist are beneficial for maintaining good oral health and evading gum disease.

Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing is a non-surgical procedure that can effectively prevent and treat gum disease. Scaling involves removing the plaque and tartar from the tooth surfaces, while root planing smooths the root surfaces, discouraging further plaque and tartar buildup and allowing the gums to heal and reattach to the teeth.

In mild to moderate cases of gum disease, scaling, and root planing may be all that is needed to restore oral health. However, in more severe cases, additional treatments may be necessary.

Oral Surgery for Gum Disease

For advanced gum disease that cannot be treated with non-surgical methods, various types of oral surgery may be necessary. 

  • Flap or Pocket Reduction Surgery: This procedure is often used for patients with moderate to severe gum disease (periodontitis). During the surgery, the dentist or periodontist lifts the gum tissue away from the teeth and cleans the infected pockets. This allows for removing tartar and bacteria that cannot be reached with non-surgical methods. After cleaning, the gum tissue is repositioned and sutured, reducing the pocket depth and promoting better oral hygiene.
  • Gum Grafts (Soft Tissue Grafts): Gum graft surgery is performed when there is significant gum recession due to gum disease. Receding gums can expose the roots of teeth, causing sensitivity and aesthetic concerns. In this procedure, tissue is taken from another part of the mouth or a donor source and attached to the areas with receding gums. This helps cover the exposed tooth roots, reduce sensitivity, and improve the appearance of the gums.
  • Bone Grafts: Advanced gum disease can lead to losing supporting bone structure around the teeth. To address this issue, bone grafts may be performed. During a bone graft procedure, synthetic or natural bone material is placed in the areas where bone loss has occurred. Over time, this promotes the regeneration of bone, providing a stable foundation for the teeth and preventing further tooth loss.

Upon seeking a consultation with a periodontist, you may find that what you thought was a minor issue quickly escalates into the necessity for Custom Periodontics & Implantology.

How To Prevent Gum Disease?

Preventing gum disease involves a daily routine of good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular check-ups with your dentist or periodontist. Here are some preventive measures:

  • Brush your teeth at least twice daily with fluoride toothpaste.
  • Floss daily to remove plaque between your teeth and along the gum line, where your toothbrush cannot reach.
  • Eat a balanced diet and limit snacks, which may reduce your risk of developing gum disease.
  • Visit your dentist or periodontist regularly for cleanings and check-ups.

How About Dental Implants?

Dental implants may be an ideal solution if gum disease has progressed to the point where tooth loss has occurred. Dental implants are artificial tooth roots, usually titanium, inserted into the jawbone. Once in place, these implants can securely hold a crown, bridge, or denture, offering a natural-looking and functional tooth replacement.

Because this is a specialized surgical procedure, working with a professional who fully understands the process is important. Searching for “tooth implant specialists in Fort Worth,” for instance, will yield results of trained and experienced professionals in implant dentistry.


Gum disease can significantly affect your oral and overall health. But with the appropriate periodontic treatment, you can successfully prevent and manage gum disease. Early detection and intervention are crucial; therefore, never ignore the signs. Consult a professional and ensure your oral health is always a priority.