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Periodontal Disease Prevention and Treatment

Gum health is the foundation for your overall dental health.

At Harbor Point Dentistry, we stress the importance of gum health as a top priority for every patient.

Whether you are experiencing a problem - pain, bleeding, gums pulling away from your teeth - or you have not noticed anything wrong, we need to talk about periodontal health.

Why is this important?

Filling a cavity serves no purpose if the tooth’s foundation is poor. It is also recommended that one does not restore or invest in their teeth or smile until proper gum health is achieved. A nicely restored tooth offers no benefit to you if it’s at risk for infection or mobility (if the tooth becomes loose).

What is periodontal disease?

Rather than one condition, “periodontal disease” really refers to the progression of bacterial infection of the gums. We use different terms to describe the conditions at each stage.

Am I at risk?

The greatest risk factor for periodontal disease is infrequent dental visits. If you haven’t seen a dentist in two years or more, periodontal disease may be present.

It’s important to understand that it’s possible to have early periodontal disease and not experience pain. Don’t wait for advanced warning signs like pain, bad breath, bleeding gums or tooth mobility (loose teeth) to make an appointment.

How do you treat periodontal disease?

Periodontal treatments include preventative, non-surgical, or surgical intervention depending on the presence and severity of disease.

Prevention and Early Treatment

One of the most important goals of preventative dentistry (routine cleanings) is to maintain the conditions that minimize the risk of periodontal disease. That means:

  1. Brushing at least twice a day and flossing daily.
  2. Professional hygiene appointments at least twice a year.

If you have gingivitis, we can treat it through regularly scheduled professional hygiene appointments.

Non-Surgical Treatment: Early Periodontitis

Early periodontitis can be addressed with an advanced cleaning technique called scaling and root planing procedures. We are able to remove bacteria, plaque, and debris under the gum line with a professional ultrasonic cleaning device.

The goal is to provide a clean, healthy surface to which the separated or “loose” gum tissue can reattach successfully. You will be provided with a customized home care plan so you can continue to achieve proper oral health in the weeks to come following your dental appointment. This plan will include brushing and flossing techniques to help you maintain your healthy smile.

Surgical Treatment: Late Periodontal Disease

If the tissue or bone surrounding your teeth is too damaged to be repaired with non-surgical treatment, several surgical procedures are available to prevent severe damage and to restore a healthy smile.

Pocket Depth Reduction

“Pockets” are the open spaces around teeth caused by periodontal disease, which are breeding grounds for harmful bacteria. In pocket depth reduction, or “flap surgery,” we fold back the gums to perform deep cleaning, remove damaged tissue and sew the healthy tissue back into place.


In cases where the bone and tissue supporting the teeth have degraded, we can take measures to repair the damage. We may perform a bone graft to stimulate new bone growth, or apply a protein to stimulate tissue growth.

Soft-Tissue Graft

To treat gum recession, or the loss of gum tissue to the point where teeth roots are exposed, we can take a small amount of oral tissue and sew it to the gum area. This restores the gum line to its original, healthy location.

Your Most Comfortable Periodontal Treatment Plan

If you have been unable to see a dentist for a while, we understand!

Life happens. Many of our patients present with dental conditions due to being a parent and putting their needs last or being a household caregiver for a loved one. We have great empathy for our patients’ circumstances. Taking care of a child, experiencing long-term illness, major life changes like a long-distance move all can keep you out of the dentist chair. You’ll get no judgment here.

The staff at Harbor Point Dentistry is committed to working with you and your individual needs to create a plan for prevention or treatment of periodontal disease you’ll feel comfortable with. Your oral health and comfort are our top priorities.

Make your appointment with us today!

Compassionate & Comprehensive Dentistry Creating a smile that reflects who you are.

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