A typical dental cleaning is for people who have an overall healthy mouth, and do not have an active periodontal disease.
People who have periodontal disease are in an infected state, and the infection needs to be treated. A regular dental cleaning will not address the condition, and not treating it will allow it to worsen.
Typically, the first step in treating periodontal disease is having a “deep cleaning” done. This allows your hygienist to get the tissues numb, and comfortably clean out the bacteria embedded deep in your gum pockets, and smooth the surfaces to reduce future bacteria accumulation.
Often times, your hygienist will use laser therapy after the deep cleaning to kill residual bacteria, reduce inflammation, reduce bleeding, and promote quicker healing. Other conjunctive therapies include medicinal rinses and placement of antibiotics in the healing gum tissues.
Following treatment, good oral hygiene on a daily basis is essential to preventing periodontal disease from continuing to damage your mouth. Since bacterial accumulation is the ultimate cause of periodontal disease, effective brushing and flossing is the only thing that will keep bacteria from cropping up.
Electric toothbrushes have been shown to reduce plaque up to 90% better than a traditional manual toothbrush. Electric toothbrushes are also more gentle on the gums, preventing worsening of recession. Flossing is also essential to keeping bacteria from accumulating between the teeth.
Traditional string floss may not be able to get to the bottom of deep gum pockets, which is crucial in preventing disease relapse. Using a water flosser (such as a Waterpik) will clean deeper into the pockets, and flush out deep bacteria about 60% better than string floss.
In addition to excellent home care, returning for maintenance cleanings every 3-4 months is important to allow us to maintain and monitor your disease state, and address it immediately if there is a relapse.
450 Sutter St., Suite 1630
San Francisco, CA 94108
“Dr. Shin is friendly and great at communicating. The staff are knowledgeable and go out their way to help patients. They are super speedy without compromising accuracy or helpfulness. I always leave Dr. Shin’s office feeling good and smiling wide!” Claire S.