Periodontics is a specialty of dentistry that focuses on the gums and other supporting structures of the teeth. Certain conditions, such as gum disease, can affect the foundation of a tooth by causing infection and bone loss.

The CDC estimates that nearly 50% of the adult population in the United States have some form of periodontal disease, and the majority of those afflicted are not aware of their condition. The reason for this is that in the early and moderate stages of periodontal disease, most people only experience subtle symptoms such as gum bleeding or bad breath.

At Beyer Dental, we have the training and experience required for optimal treatment of these dental conditions, helping to protect the gums and supporting tissues around your teeth. Not only is your oral health impacted by your periodontal status, but unhealthy gums can indicate other systemic diseases that might be occurring throughout the body.

Gum Disease

Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease, and it begins as gum inflammation and irritation. When gingivitis is left untreated, it can progress to periodontitis. Signs of gum disease include bleeding of the gums when brushing and flossing, as well as pain, swelling, and redness of the gums.

As the disease progresses irreversible tissue damage can occur, eventually causing the gums to pull away from the teeth as bacteria flourishes below the gumline. Left untreated, gum disease can form deep pockets of infection, which can cause shifting or loose teeth. It is important to be proactive with gum disease treatment in the earliest stages to avoid severe dental issues later on.

Scaling & Root Planing

Gum disease is caused by plaque that forms on the teeth and below the gums. This film of bacteria can get trapped in pockets beneath the gumline and lead to bone and tooth loss.

Scaling and Root Planing is most effective when gum disease is caught in the early stages, which is why regular dental exams are recommended.

Scaling is the process of removing the tartar and plaque both above and below the gumline. Root planing involves deeper cleaning to smooth the root surfaces and allow gingival reattachment. This creates a less favorable environment for plaque accumulation and leads to disease stabilization.

Periodontal Disease & Cardiovascular Disease

Several studies have shown that periodontal disease is associated with heart disease. While a cause-and-effect relationship has not yet been proven, research has indicated that the presence of periodontal disease increases the risk of heart disease. It is believed that the inflammation caused by periodontal disease may be responsible for this association.

Additional studies have pointed to a relationship between periodontal disease and strokes. In one study that looked at the causal relationship of oral infections as a risk factor for strokes, people diagnosed with acute cerebrovascular ischemia were found to be more likely to have an oral infection when compared to those in the control group.

Periodontal Disease & Diabetes

Our staff offers a full spectrum of dental services to manage infection in the teeth and tissues of your mouth. People with diabetes are more likely to have periodontal disease, because they are more susceptible to contracting infections. In fact, periodontal disease is often considered a complication of diabetes. Those people who don’t have their diabetes under control are especially at risk, and should work with us closely to avoid dental complications.

Research has suggested that periodontal disease may make it more difficult for people who have diabetes to control their blood sugar.

Severe periodontal disease can increase blood sugar, leading to increased periods of time when the body functions with high blood sugar. This puts people with diabetes at an increased risk for diabetic complications. If you are diabetic or pre-diabetic, talk to us about treatment options to protect your teeth and gums.

Periodontal Disease & Tobacco Use

Tobacco users also are at an increased risk for periodontal disease. Studies have shown that tobacco use may be one of the most significant risk factors in the development and progression of periodontal disease.

Periodontal Disease & Pregnancy

Pregnant women who have periodontal disease are more likely to have a baby that is born prematurely and underweight. However, more research is needed to confirm how periodontal disease affects pregnancy outcomes.

The American Dental Association recommends that women considering pregnancy have a periodontal evaluation. Call us at Beyer Dental to learn more.


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