Periodontics & Restorative Dentistry in Cottonwood, AZ

At Arizona Smile Designers, we believe everyone deserves a smile they’re truly proud to show off, and our mission is to help our patients achieve one. As a leading comprehensive dental practice serving the Cottonwood and Sedona, AZ areas, we offer a wide range of dental treatments, and our Cottonwood dentists work with patients to personalize treatment plans to fit any lifestyle. We place a strong focus on preventive treatment at our office, but in the event that dental problems do develop and spread into the gums, we’re proud to offer comprehensive periodontal care to help restore any smile back to optimal health.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

More commonly known as gum disease, periodontal disease occurs as a result of a bacterial infection in the gums. Periodontal disease is a progressive condition, and while it starts mild, it can grow to have serious repercussions if left untreated. Advanced periodontal disease can threaten the gums, bones, and tissues surrounding the teeth to the point of causing tooth loss, and it’s even been linked to systemic (affecting the entire body) conditions like heart disease, kidney disease, coronary artery disease, diabetes, and even some types of cancer. Thankfully, gum disease is easy to prevent, and treatment is possible even in its later stages.

The Symptoms of Gum Disease

Periodontal disease starts off very mild, and symptoms get worse as the condition progresses. Symptoms of gum disease can include any of the following, and the greater the number or intensity of the symptoms, the more serious the condition:

  • Bleeding Gums: One of the earliest signs of periodontal disease, bleeding from brushing or flossing too hard should never be ignored.
  • Red or Swollen Gums: The bacteria that cause periodontal disease leads to inflammation of the gums, causing them to appear red or swollen.
  • Bad Breath: Chronic bad breath can be a sign of lingering bacterial colonies in the mouth.
  • Receding Gums: An early symptom of periodontal disease is that your gums start shrinking back and your teeth appear to be longer. We’ll perform checks for gum recession during routine dental exams.
  • Tooth Sensitivity: As gums recede, the sensitive roots of the teeth become exposed, which may lead to increased sensitivity to hot or cold foods and beverages.
  • Abscesses: A symptom of advanced periodontal disease, pus-filled abscesses can form when bacteria get trapped in a periodontal pocket.
  • Loose Teeth: In more advanced stages of periodontitis, bone loss can cause teeth to separate from the bones and ligaments of the jaws, making them feel loose.

How to Prevent Periodontal Disease

As with many aspects of dental health, preventing gum disease is always easier than treating it. Thankfully, gum disease prevention is simple. For most patients, diligent oral hygiene and regular exams and teeth cleanings with your Cottonwood dentist are sufficient to keep periodontal disease in check. For even stronger prevention, combine these efforts with a focus on a healthy diet, relieving stress, and quitting unhealthy habits like smoking.

Gum Disease & Periodontitis Treatments

The first step to treating periodontal disease is to evaluate your oral hygiene habits. Your Sedona area periodontist will work with you to improve your oral hygiene habits, as this is the only way to ensure that gum disease doesn’t occur. Your periodontist will then recommend treatment, which may include any of the following:

  • Scaling & Root Planing: This procedure is similar to teeth cleaning, but more intensive. It involves using specialized tools to remove bacteria, plaque, and tartar from both above and below the gum line, then smoothing out the surfaces of the tooth roots to make it harder for bacteria to grow there.
  • Antibiotics: In addition to scaling and root planing, we may also prescribe antibiotics to control the bacterial infection in the gums.
  • Dental Surgery: For more severe cases of periodontitis, we may recommend dental surgery. This treatment can include tissue grafts, pocket reduction surgery, bone grafting, or any combination of these procedures.
Arizona Smile Designers

Contact Your Local Cosmetic Dentist

With proper treatment and diligent oral hygiene, we can restore your smile from periodontal disease and ensure you maintain a healthy smile for a lifetime. If you think you may be suffering from the early signs of gum disease, don’t leave it up to chance: contact us to schedule an evaluation today. We’ll diagnose the health of your teeth and gums, provide any necessary treatment procedures, and give you tips and instructions to help you maintain your healthy, beautiful smile. We can’t wait to hear from you!