The word is indicative of its meaning like almost all dental terminology. “Peri” comes from the word perimeter, which means around and “odont” comes from teeth. With the contraption of the two words, you get “around the teeth”. Yes this is what it is all about. Periodontics deals with the tissues that surround the teeth.
The gums and the bone surround the teeth and are its supporting structures. Without these structures being healthy the teeth becomes loose.
In our mouth there is a normal oral flora, these are different micro-organisms that live in our mouth and under ideal circumstances, they are beneficial to us. Note that we can’t clean our teeth 100% clean all the time. Microscopic particles are always left in our mouth after brushing and flossing. These microorganisms help us maintain our teeth and gums clean by devouring these tiny particles; in effect they live in a symbiotic existence with us. We benefit from them and they do from us. At times when oral hygiene isn’t good and we leave lots of food particles in our mouth, these micro-organisms find plenty of food and they begin to multiply. When this happens, that equilibrium, that symbiotic aspect is lost and they become detrimental to us. It’s estimated that there are some 5-7million micro-organisms per milliliter of saliva in our mouth. This is a large quantity; now imagine we don’t brush or don’t brush adequately, this would cause the quantities to increase exponentially. Bacterial Plaque or Biofilm is the name given to this film of micro-organisms that forms around the teeth. This is when they become extremely harmful to the supporting structure that is around our teeth. Now compound this with the thought the you haven’t brush properly and we have accumulated lots of food particles around our teeth, this food solidifies and hardened and attracts more micro-organism.
As a matter of fact, this is the correct environment for the proliferation of micro-organisms in our mouth.With the large amount of micro-organisms and their subsequent excrement, inflammation of the gums is inevitable. With the progression and the continuous bad habits, the gums becomes so inflamed that the body start to be defensive and causes the bone to begin to be absorb slowly thereby loosing bony support for the teeth. With this continuously happening, eventually the complete loss of bone occurs and the tooth looses all its support and may need to be extracted or they actually fall out of the mouth. All this occurs slowly dependent on the situation. Dental attention is advised whenever one find bleeding gums, as this is one of the first sign that periodontal problems exist. We always recommend that visits be made once every 4-6 months. The frequency varies dependent of the gravity of the problem. Periodontal disease is likewise compounded by the mere aspect of chewing as the teeth are receiving lots of pressure whilst chewing. Imagine this happening and you have some missing teeth. This only makes the problem worst. Most dental diseases are multi-factorial; there are lots of different intervening issues that are involved and no one remedy will make them go away. A multi-treatment approach is always necessary.
For the Dentist to resolve this problem, the patient is advised of the entire etiology of the disease. That is to say the patient is taught how the disease develops, what are its causes, how to prevent it and how to maintain healthy gums and bone and in effect, teeth. Treatment usually involves the cleaning of the teeth by the Dentist or hygienist and this depends on the severity of the problem. Scaling and root planning are common procedures that are done to control and arrest this problem. The treatment involves several visits as control of this bacterial plaque has to be meticulously done. Brushing and flossing instructions are done to ensure a “habit change”; as this is great part of the basis of this disease. The adage, “be true to your teeth otherwise they’ll be false to you” hold true in this case.
Dr. Osbert O. Usher Dental Clinic provides for the comprehensive treatment of periodontal disease ensuring that a complete attitude change towards oral hygiene is established and the connection between oral health and general health is enforced. A complete transformational experience is provided so as to cause the patient to realize the cumulative effects of long term neglect.