Your periodontal health, also known as your gum tissue, is important. Gum tissue provides support to your teeth, keeping them firmly in place. When our team at Southern Arizona Periodontics notice that there are elevated levels of inflammation due to the effect of microorganisms, Chemotherapeutics can be used to eliminate or dramatically reduce the effects of these mediators within the oral cavity. These agents kill and control bacteria, supragingival plaque, and associated gingivitis.
How did my periodontal tissue become inflamed?
Your body, all your body, is subject to infection. The largest protective layer we have is our skin. Bacteria that can bypass the skin layer leaves the area open to infection. This means that invasive bacteria have made contact with portions of your body below the skin. Our mouth is one of the few openings we have that is a direct source to other areas inside our body, and though we have some natural forms of defense, such as saliva, our oral cavity is still subject to infection.
Our mouths constantly collect bacteria, it’s in the food and drinks we consume, and even in the air, we breathe. This bacterium then gathers with food debris into a naturally occurring material known as plaque. Plaque is the soft, sticky material that collects between our teeth and gums. We can fight bacteria and plaque by brushing, flossing and rinsing daily, but some can still get missed. Plaque that remains in place dries and hardens into a material that we call tartar or calculus. Tartar is difficult to remove and shouldn’t be removed without the assistance of a dental hygienist to protect the enamel.
Tartar that dips below the gum line between the gums and teeth is a source for infection to occur. The gums become infected, and then the typical symptoms of infection occur. The gums become inflamed, red, puffy. The patient may see small amounts of blood in their spit or on their floss when they brush and floss their teeth. The gums may move away from the tooth to get away from the bacteria. The teeth can begin to feel loose or even move around in your mouth.
Depending on the severity, we can offer different options for treatment of the periodontal tissue. One option is Chemotherapeutics. This procedure involves the thorough cleaning of the gums, removing bacteria from below the gum pockets, possibly treating the area with antibiotics, and inducing a healing response from your gum tissue. Antibiotics or irrigation with anti-microbials may be recommended to help control the growth of bacteria. In some cases, we may place ARESTIN® in the periodontal pockets after scaling and root planing to further control infection and encourage normal healing.
ARESTIN® is an antimicrobial approved by the FDA. Placement of ARESTIN® is recommended for the treatment of periodontal disease with pockets greater than 5mm to achieve greater pocket reduction and possibly avoid the need for definitive surgical procedures. ARESTIN® uses unique microsphere technology to deliver the antibiotic directly to the infected area(s).