<b>What are Periodontal Exams?</b>
Your periodontal (gum) health is more crucial to your smile than you might think. Periodontal disease is incredibly common, affecting nearly half of all patients over the age of 30. In its early stages, your gums may be swollen and might bleed whenever you brush or floss them. Over time, the gums begin to separate from the tooth, causing large pockets to form between the tooth and the gums. If left untreated, gum disease can eventually lead to both tooth and bone loss.
<b>Why are Periodontal Exams needed?</b>
A periodontal exam helps us to identify issues with gingivitis and gum disease. We measure the pockets around each tooth and make notes of any pocketing that is deeper than about 3mm. This can help us to create a specialized and personalized periodontal treatment plan that is right for you. Periodontal exams are critical in both finding and treating gum disease.
<b>Who is a good candidate for Periodontal Exams?</b>
Every adult patient is a good candidate for periodontal examinations. These exams take very little time and are often done in conjunction with your bi-annual cleaning and checkup. By examining the health of your gums, we can create a treatment plan that is right for you. This helps to stop and prevent the spread of gum disease, eventually saving your teeth and preventing the need for dentures, extractions and other procedures.
<b>What happens during Periodontal Exams?</b>
A periodontal exam takes a few minutes in our office. Using a safe probe, we measure the pocketing around each tooth. If this pocketing is deeper than 3mm, we may suggest followup periodontal treatment to help prevent the spread of infection and disease. You can have these exams done at each of your checkup appointments or on an as-needed basis. If you are undergoing periodontal care for gum disease, you may need more frequent gum exams so that we can ensure the disease is not progressing to the point of needing additional treatment.
If you think you might need or will benefit from periodontal examinations, call us now and we’ll be happy to get you in for an appointment.