Periodontal disease damages the surrounding soft tissues and bone that support the teeth. It is predominantly caused by the accumulation of bacteria, mucus and other particles in the form of plaque or tartar that sit between the teeth and the gums. Periodontal disease can range in severity from a simple gum inflammation, known as gingivitis, to a more serious inflammation of the periodontal tissues. Left untreated periodontal disease can result in significant tissue damage and eventual tooth loss.
The problem with periodontal disease is that often the progression is painless. As a result the affected individual may not be aware of an ongoing disease process. This is why it is so important to recognize the signs of the earliest stage of periodontal disease, which is gingivitis. The symptoms of gingivitis typically include red, swollen and bleeding gums. Treatment instituted at this point is often sufficient to reverse the course of the disease and to avoid any permanent damage to the periodontal tissues. A series of deep dental cleanings, an improved home care regimen, and a commitment to regular maintenance may be all that is required to prevent this stage of periodontal disease from progressing.
Left untreated, gingivitis can escalate into periodontitis. However, there are other factors that can contribute to the escalation of periodontal disease, including smoking, genetic tendencies, and unchecked diabetes. In either case, when periodontal disease has progressed to a more advanced stage there is usually clinical and radiographic evidence of damage to the bone and soft tissues supporting the teeth. Periodontal treatment in this phase is designed to halt the progression of the disease and to restore tooth support as possible. This may involve medications to control the bacteria and reduce the size of the pockets between the teeth and gums, gum surgery, as well as bone and tissue grafts.
With the progression of periodontal disease, pockets between the teeth and gums get deeper and more damaging over time. While more extensive cleanings involving scalings and root planings can remove some of the accumulated plaque and debris, it’s often not enough to support sufficient healing. To further reduce the presence of harmful bacteria where dental instruments can’t reach, local antibiotic therapy with ARESTIN® (minocycline HCL) Microspheres can help.
An excellent adjunct to care
According to studies, applying ARESTIN to periodontal pockets reduces bacteria more than 2x as much as scaling and root planing alone. It also supports more significant reductions in pocket depth as tissue healing occurs. When administered at the time of a scaling and root planing procedure, ARESTIN (minocycline HCI) Microspheres are deposited via a small syringe at the base of each pocket. As the minocycline microspheres dissolve and resorb, the antibiotic slowly releases throughout the pocket and into the tissues.
Improved treatment outcomes
Local, targeted antibiotic therapy with ARESTIN works over an extended period to offer more protection and improved results for adults with periodontitis.
By performing a deep cleaning, which is also known as a scaling and root planing, your dentist and dental hygienist can remove any excessive buildup of plaque and tartar that has accumulated around your teeth in the area below the gumline. The goal of this procedure is to treat periodontal disease by eliminating inflammation and reducing the size of pockets between the teeth and gums. While a dental scaling is intended to carefully eliminate any accumulated deposits on the surface of the tooth below the gumline, a root planing goes deeper to smooth the surface of the root so that the gums can properly reattach and heal.
The dentist will determine how many visits your scaling and root planing will require and how many sections of your mouth will be addressed at each appointment. Deep cleanings coupled with an excellent regimen of oral hygiene at home can be effective in restoring your periodontal health. If the tissues do not respond to this intervention, additional procedures including periodontal surgery will be considered.