Maintain Periodontal Stability
To make sure our patients maintain the highest level of ongoing periodontal stability, we are passionate about the essential need for periodontal maintenance. At our office, we do regular follow-up care in order to make sure you, our patients, are getting the most optimal periodontal care.
What is Periodontal Maintenance?
Periodontal Maintenance is the routine follow-up appointment for those who have undergone gum surgery or other periodontal disease treatment. If you have periodontal or gum disease that has resulted in bone loss, gum “pockets” deeper than 5 millimeters, bleeding gums, exposed root surfaces, or if you have had periodontal surgery or root planning to treat periodontal surgery or root planning to treat periodontal disease, periodontal maintenance scaling is needed to maintain gum and bone health.
The procedure includes removal of plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line, all the way down the length of each tooth to where the root, gum, and bone meet. Rough area of the roots are smoothed if needed, pocket depths are carefully monitored, and inflamed pockets may be irrigated with antibacterial medicines if necessary.
What to expect
These appointments generally last 60 minutes and are performed four times a year every year after your periodontal treatment. Each visit involves scaling, polishing, and your dental hygienist will also check the depth of your perio pockets.
Gum Disease Treatment
Periodontal disease is an inflammatory disease that affects your teeth and the area around your teeth, like your gums. Early periodontal disease, known commonly as gingivitis, can often be taken care of and even reversed with mindful dental care, such as teeth brushing, flossing, use of mouthwash and having regular visits to your dentist.
The typical first approach to treating periodontal disease is the least invasive: Doing a deep cleaning. This is normally done at a general dentist office, where the hygienist will do a deep cleansing that gets into the deep pockets.
After the dentist or their hygienist does that clean up, there’s a follow up, usually after 2 months. In some cases, the problem hasn’t been solved by that deep cleaning. When this happens, that is when you get referred to a specialist, like our team here at Dr. Khansari’s office.
That’s where the second approach happens. Rather than repeating that same cleaning process as the dentist, we take it to the next level to really get to the root of the problem. Thanks to improved and new technology, we can treat the infected area without having to shave into the gum or bone, which used to be a standard procedure. Now, we are very proud of the fact that we can regenerate supporting bone around the teeth using microsurgical techniques, getting those gums back to their best possible health.
Periodontal Follow-Up Care
We have regular follow up care in order to make sure you are getting the most optimal periodontal health care. At those appointments the periodontist will re-evaluate the periodontal attachment in terms of measuring the amount of the gingival recessions, periodontal pockets and supporting bone.
Any signs of the disease activity will be evaluated at that appointment to make sure that the periodontium will be stable till your next visit.
Frequently Asked Questions
About Periodontal Maintenance
What does periodontal maintenance involve?
Periodontal maintenance scaling is needed to maintain gum and bone health. This procedure includes removal of plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line, all the way down the length of each tooth to where the root, gum, and bone meet.
Rough areas of the roots are smoothed if needed, pocket depths are carefully monitored and measured, and inflamed pockets may be irrigated with antibacterial medicines if necessary. You’ll also receive a thorough clinical examination (including oral cancer screening), a review of your medical history, and X-rays or other diagnostic tests if needed.
What is the difference between regular cleaning and periodontal maintenance?
During a “regular” teeth cleaning, the hygienist removes plaque and tartar from all visible teeth surfaces as well as in between the teeth and near the gums. There is no additional work that needs to be done at these appointments because the patient has healthy gum tissue.
During Periodontal Maintenance, your dental hygienist performs the same services as regular teeth cleaning and then they take it a few steps further by removing plaque from your perio pockets, or deeper areas that were created by gum disease. The pocket is formed between the gums and the tooth and collects excess amounts of plaque that can only be removed by a dental professional. These pockets are not visible to the naked eye and require extra time and skill to clean.
How often do you recommend having periodontal maintenance?
It is key that we make sure our patients who undergo gum surgeries stay healthy. That’s why anyone who has had gum surgery needs to have 4 cleanings a year, or one about every 3 months. Most people have only 2 cleanings a year; it’s critical to double up on cleanings for patients who have had a history of gum disease or gum surgery to make sure the gum disease doesn’t come back.
For example, like having high blood pressure, there isn’t a 100% curable solution for periodontal disease. However, we can pretty much eliminate the problem and keep it in check with patient home care and Periodontal Maintenance. By conducting Periodontal Maintenance, we can monitor and make sure the disease doesn’t return.
What are the benefits of regular periodontal maintenance?
It’s important to have follow up periodontal maintenance because it assists in getting rid of bacteria and plaque that can lead to negative consequences and/or recurrence of periodontal disease. Plus, it helps stimulate more healing and prevent more destruction of vital bone. In general, performing regular periodontal maintenance can:
- Prevent gum disease (gingivitis)
- Maintain fresh breath
- Remove tartar
- Help teeth look and feel clean
- Protect your teeth, gums, and bone health
How much does periodontal maintenance cost?
Many dental insurance companies will pay for several recare visits throughout the year, including periodontal maintenance appointments. If you don’t have insurance, the cost will depend on how many periodontal maintenance appointments you have per year. Call our office before your appointment to learn about your payment options.
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