Periodontitis or periodontal disease is generally a disease of the tooth structure (periodontium), which is usually caused by bacterial inflammation of the tooth bed. In severe cases, periodontitis can lead to the destruction of the tooth retention system and tooth loss. The main cause of periodontitis is poor oral hygiene. If oral hygiene is incorrect or inadequate, the dental plaque from eating and drinking, also known as plaque, will not be removed properly. This allows bacteria to form quickly on the tooth, which can easily attack and destroy the less protected gums.
Preventive measures to avoid periodontitis
The goal should always be to prevent the development of periodontal disease in advance. For this, effective preventive measures can be taken as part of dental prophylaxis. First and foremost is thorough daily oral hygiene (morning and evening) with a suitable toothbrush for cleaning the tooth surfaces. Also important is dental floss, with which residues in the interdental spaces can be removed more or less easily. Another important measure is regular tooth cleaning by the dentist. Dentists recommend doing this twice a year. Existing dental plaque and tartar on the tooth and in the tooth pockets are removed in a professional manner, which is not possible with a normal toothbrush and dental floss. In addition, it is important to avoid other risk factors that may further promote the development of periodontitis, e.g. Smoking or very sugary foods.
What to do with periodontitis – treatment options
The choice of the right form of treatment basically depends on the type and severity of the inflammation, which the dentist analyzes and documents as part of a diagnosis. The severity can often be derived from the depth of the tooth pockets that have already formed (pocket depth). As a first measure, the existing plaque is usually removed. Depending on the degree of spread, the treatment also includes dental plaque that has formed below the gums and already in the bone pockets. With a very advanced gingivitis with a pocket depth of more than 6 millimeters, additional surgical interventions or measures to open the gums are often unavoidable. To protect exposed tooth necks, they are also filled with material after cleaning. In general, it can be said that the development of periodontitis can be stopped by using effective treatment options, but gum decline can no longer be reversed. The tooth support tissue remains permanently weakened and the teeth are no longer tight as with healthy teeth. That is why regular checkups to avoid periodontitis in connection with professional tooth cleaning are all the more important.
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