How to Know if You Have Gum Disease

Closeup portrait of a successful business team laughing togetherThere are several warning signs that may point to gum disease. For many patients, bleeding gums trigger a wave of concern. Our dentists in North Hollywood are experts in detecting signs of gum disease and combating symptoms before they progress.

There are numerous factors that can contribute to the development of gum disease. For example, hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy, puberty, menopause, and menstruation are known to increase gum sensitivity, allowing for gingivitis to develop. Patients with illnesses such as cancer, HPV, and diabetes are at higher risk of developing gum disease. Any of these factors paired with poor oral hygiene, smoking, or a family history of gum disease are cause for concern. If gingivitis occurs and is left untreated, it can develop into gum disease. Several periodontal treatments are available to those suffering from gingivitis, and should be sought out promptly at the sign of infection. In order to prevent and reverse gingivitis, one should practice plaque control through daily brushing and flossing. However, this is not enough. Patients must receive a professional cleaning every six months to ensure their gums are healthy. Another step would be to maintain a well-balanced diet to promote a strong immune system. Vitamins E and C are incredibly effective in repairing damaged body tissue.

Prosthodontists and What They Do

Dental assistant smiling at cameraProsthodontists are often the chief architects of dental makeovers. Their training includes four years of dental school as usual, plus three graduate years during which they study extensively in the restoration and replacement of teeth. Prosthodontics is one of nine dental specialties spelled out by the American Dental Association (ADA).

Practices of our prosthodontist in LA include:

• Crowning or “capping” teeth that have structural insufficiency

• Placing veneers to camouflage chips, stains, or other surface flaws in teeth

• Dental implants, bonding, and placement of full and partial dentures

• Advanced maxillofacial prosthetics, like oral cancer reconstruction

An important role for the prosthodontist is supervisory. Patients requesting full mouth reconstructions often need the input and expertise of several practitioners across a range of dentistry. It’s the prosthodontist who reviews proposals, makes referrals, and organizes care management.

If you entertain the idea of the dental mastermind, you could do worse than choose a prosthodontist. The expanse of their training, plus their certification by the American Board of Prosthodontists, make them imminently more qualified than a general dentist who just took a weekend course. Prosthodontists are also the preferred dentist of third parties, who may be overseeing the dental care of an older parent or of a child with special needs.

Contact our expert in periodontics in LA today.

What Could be the Cause of Gum Pain?


Gums can become swollen, inflamed, tender, or even painful for several reasons. Our periodontists in Los Angeles work to find the underlying cause of any gum discomfort. With the right treatment, your gum health and comfort can be restored.

Common causes of gum pain include:

  1. Aggressive dental hygiene

Brushing and flossing are among the most basic dental care needs, but brushing too hard and flossing too roughly can injure your gums. To protect your gum tissue, use a soft-bristled brush, and be gentle when you clean your teeth.

  1. Gum disease

About half of adults in the U.S. have some form of gum disease. Gum disease is caused by the bacteria in plaque, which infect the gum tissue and cause an inflammatory response. Treatments can range from professional deep cleaning and improved at-home cleaning regimens, to antimicrobial therapy and surgery.

  1. Ill-fitting dentures

If you wear dentures, they may need to be adjusted or relined periodically. If your dentures do not fit well, they can rub and irritate your gums, causing sores and pain.

If you are suffering from gum inflammation, tenderness, or pain, call our expert in gum pain treatment in Los Angeles to schedule your consultation with our team.

Periodontal Treatments

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Periodontists are dentists that specialize in the gums. Many patients can do an acceptable job taking care of their teeth, but completely ignore their gum health. This leads to varying levels of gum disease.

A mild level of gum disease is called gingivitis. Symptoms include excessive tenderness, redness, and bleeding. At this stage, increased dental care and oral hygiene may be enough to reverse the process. This includes improved brushing and flossing, as well as more frequent visits to our cosmetic dentist in San Francisco.

If the condition has become more progressed, our periodontist can perform a scaling and root planing, or SRP. This involves using a special tool to remove the plaque and tartar from just above and just below the gum line. If this is not successful, a gum flap surgery is typically attempted next, wherein incisions are made in the gums in order to better access and clean the tooth roots.

Other periodontal treatments include gum tissue and bone grafting. Failure to seek treatment for gum disease can lead to deep decay, abscessed teeth, and even tooth loss. If you have recognized any of the above symptoms in your gums, schedule an appointment with our dentist today.

What is a Deep Cleaning?

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When you brush your teeth, do you pay any attention to your gums? Some features of the gums may seem normal to you, but can actually be signs of gum disease. Gum disease starts as gingivitis, and can develop into periodontitis if not treated properly. Our cosmetic dentist in Houston employs several treatments and procedures to eliminate gum disease.

The first step advised when signs of gingivitis appear is rigorous preventive care. This includes a routine cleaning, as well as attentive brushing and flossing at home. If this is not effective and the conditions worsen, a deep cleaning is recommended next.

A deep cleaning is also referred to as a scaling and root planing. Our dentist will use a sharp tool to remove plaque from just above and just below the gum line. This should significantly reduce the periodontal pockets that have developed due to accumulated plaque and tartar.

Many patients see successful results after a deep cleaning. If inflammation progresses and the scaling and root planing does not work, there are several other tactics our dentist can try, such as pocket reduction. If you believe you are showing signs of gum disease, take the first step and call our dentist to schedule an appointment today.

Are Periodontal Treatments Invasive?

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Many periodontal treatments are available from our expert. If you have been diagnosed with periodontal disease, prompt treatment is important. The right treatment can reduce the risk of more serious complications and can even reverse early stages of the disease. Our periodontists in Los Angeles can recommend the best treatment protocol for your needs.

Noninvasive periodontal treatments are the first line of defense against gum disease. These usually include a deep cleaning process called scaling and root planing, during which all the buildup above and below the gum line is removed and the tooth roots are smoothed. This creates a healthier environment for healing. Antimicrobial treatments, frequent dental cleanings, laser therapy, and improved at-home hygiene can also play a role in your recovery.

In some cases, surgical treatments can be necessary. This usually occurs when the gum or bone tissue is too damaged to be repaired using noninvasive therapies. Surgical periodontal treatments are usually performed in conjunction with noninvasive treatments and can include pocket reduction surgery, guided tissue regeneration, bone grafts, and gum grafts. Many patients can benefit from a multi-pronged approach. Call us today to find out more or to schedule an appointment with our expert in non-surgical periodontal treatments in Los Angeles.

Types of Periodontal Treatments

Autumn womanPeriodontal disease is usually preventable but frequently neglected by patients, who often do not even know they have it. Once diagnosed, periodontal disease should be treated as soon as possible to avoid worsening and complications. Here is a look at the treatments our Los Angeles dentist may recommend for this issue.

Treatment of periodontal disease is easiest when it is in its early stages. Very early on, use of antimicrobial mouthwash and improved brushing and flossing habits may resolve periodontal disease. Our dentist may also recommend deep cleaning, also called scaling and root planing, which involves scraping bacteria away from the teeth and even slightly below the gum line.

Advanced periodontitis may necessitate gum flap surgery to remove accumulated bacteria. With this procedure, our expert in periodontal treatments in Los Angeles clears bacteria from the teeth and their roots, which are accessed by cutting the gums and pulling them back. Tissue grafts for the jaw bones and soft tissues may also be recommended if damage has occurred.

Patients can minimize their likelihood of developing periodontal disease by brushing and flossing and getting regular check-ups. At a consultation with our dentist, patients can find out if they have gum disease and explore treatment options if necessary.

Gum Disease and Its Treatment

If plaque is allowed to accumulate unchecked, it eventually leads to tooth decay. If tooth decay gets bad enough, you may even develop gum disease.

The earliest stage of gum disease is gingivitis. At this point, plaque has accumulated to the level that your gums will be inflamed, causing red tender gums that bleed easily during brushing and flossing. No bone or tissue loss has occurred in this stage, so the gingivitis is highly treatable through scaling and root planing. Scaling is when the dentist scrapes away the plaque and tartar that has built up above and below the gumline. Root planing is when the dentist removes the rough bacteria deposits that form at the root of your tooth. If scaling and root planing is done early enough, then gingivitis can be reversible and your smile can be saved.

If gingivitis is left untreated, then it can very easily develop into gum disease. During gum disease, your gums will start to separate from your bone. This creates pockets in which the bacteria are able to thrive. Scaling and root planing can halt gum disease if it is not too advanced, but it will not be able to reverse any damage that has been experienced. If gum disease gets bad enough, our dentists in North Hollywood may recommend surgery in order to control it. If enough bone and tissue have been lost, you may need to have either a bone graft or a soft tissue graft to restore them. Another possible treatment is flap surgery, in which our expert in periodontal treatments in North Hollywood surgically lifts your gums back to remove the plaque and tartar that has accumulated.

What Does Periodontal Scaling Do?

Gum disease is one of the many consequences associated with failing to practice good oral hygiene. The earliest stage of gum disease is gingivitis, where the gums are inflamed. Inflamed gums are characterized to look red and swollen, as well as they bleed easily. However, gingivitis is considered reversible, and it can be treated using a procedure called periodontal scaling.

Periodontal scaling involves our Los Angeles periodontics expert scraping away the plaque and tartar that have developed above and below the gumline. Scaling is not usually done by itself, though, and is usually paired up with a treatment called root planing. With root planing, the dentist removes the rough bacteria deposits that have accumulated at the root of the tooth and smooths it out for a clean look.

It is important to remove the plaque and tartar buildup from below the gumline. Failure to do so can lead to the gums pulling away from the teeth. Indeed, that is exactly what happens in the later stages of gum disease. By eliminating the buildup through periodontal scaling, your teeth once again become smooth surfaces. The smooth surface encourages your gums to reconnect better to your teeth. Practicing good oral hygiene after periodontal scaling can go a long way in preventing further damage from occurring from gum disease.

If you think that you may be suffering from gum disease, contact our expert in periodontal scaling in Los Angeles to set up a consultation.

Improving the Appearance of Gums

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When you think of an attractive smile, do you think of even, white teeth? Most people do, which is why it is so easy to overlook the importance of gums in a smile. The gum tissue should fit around the tooth tightly, much like a turtleneck sweater, and it should be healthy and smooth without any inflammation or sores.

In most smiles, the gum tissue is in the background where it can frame the teeth to create a balanced look, but some smiles expose more than the average amount of gum tissue. These are known as “gummy smiles.” Other smiles may have streaks, spots, or other discolorations. If you are unhappy with the look of your gums, our dentist can help.

We offer several treatments for the cosmetic improvement of gums. Gummy smile treatments can include gum contouring, crown lengthening, lip lowering, and jaw surgery. Depigmentation, or gum bleaching, may be appropriate for people with stained or naturally dark gums. These treatments may be used separately or together to create a more proportionate, attractive smile.

The look of your gums can overwhelm and detract from the look of your teeth, or they can highlight your smile’s unique beauty. Call us today to learn more about your options or to schedule an appointment with our expert in cosmetic periodontal surgery in Sherman Oaks.