The word periodontal means the periphery of the tooth. The part to be expressed by the periphery of the tooth is the gingiva, the alveolar bone surrounding the tooth, the cementum and the periodontal ligament. Gum diseases, namely periodontal diseases, is a disease characterized by inflammation and destruction of these surrounding tissues. Periodontal diseases can affect one or more teeth and lead to tooth loss if left untreated.
When the teeth are not brushed effectively, accumulations of microorganisms, leukocytes, dead epithelial cells, salivary proteins and food residues, which we call compact and colorless microbial plaque, occur on the teeth. This layer of plaque causes inflammation in the gingiva. Periodontal diseases are a chronic bacterial infection affecting the gingival and supporting bone of the teeth and are divided into two main groups as gingivitis and periodontitis. Gingivitis is the mild form of the disease and is observed in the form of redness, swelling and easy bleeding in the gingiva. Gingivitis is usually caused by improper oral hygiene, and is reversible with good oral care and initial treatment including scaling, polishing and oral hygiene motivation. If gingivitis is not treated, it can turn into periodontitis. Over time, plaque progresses under the gingiva, bacterial toxins irritate the gingiva, causing the onset of chronic inflammation, and the destruction of the bone supporting the tooth occurs. Thus, the gingiva is separated from the tooth, and spaces called pockets are formed between the tooth and the gingiva. As the disease progresses, the pocket deepens and more gingival and bone destruction occurs. In more advanced stages, the teeth wobble and have to be extracted.
Causes of periodontal diseases:
Although the main cause of periodontal diseases is bacterial plaque, some factors contribute to the onset and progression of the disease. These factors are:
Smoking and tobacco use: It is considered to be a risk factor for periodontal diseases. It negatively affects both the progression of the disease and the response to treatment.
Genetic: Studies show that 30% of the population is genetically predisposed to gum disease. Despite a very good oral care, it has been revealed that this population is 6 times more likely to develop periodontal disease.
Pregnancy: Hormonal changes during pregnancy cause changes in many tissues of the body, including the gums. The gingiva is more sensitive and sensitive during this period and is more prone to the occurrence of gingival diseases. In addition, as a result of recent studies, it has been shown that periodontal diseases can cause low birth weight and preterm birth.
Stress: Stress is an underlying factor in many health problems. Although the reason for creating a risk factor for periodontal diseases is not known exactly, it is known that stress inhibits the body’s defense mechanism against infection.
Medicines:Certain medications, such as birth control pills, antidepressants, and certain heart medications, affect oral health.
Teeth clenching and grinding habits:These habits cause excessive force to the teeth and surrounding tissues and facilitate the destruction of periodontal tissues.
Diabetes: Diabetes is a disease caused by changes in blood sugar. Diabetics have a higher risk of developing infectious diseases such as periodontal diseases. As a result of the researches, it was observed that the blood sugar level was controlled following the treatment of existing periodontal diseases.
Not enought feeding : Malnutrition weakens the immune system and reduces the resistance to infection. Since periodontal diseases are serious infectious diseases, malnutrition negatively affects the gingiva.
Treatment of periodontal diseases
The main goal in the treatment of periodontal diseases is to stop the progression of the disease and to ensure its maintenance. For this purpose, surgical and non-surgical treatments are performed.
Periodontal non-surgical treatment : This form of treatment includes scaling – root planing (removal of plaque and calculus from the tooth surface and removal of bacterial toxins from deep pockets and tooth surface) and the use of local antimicrobial agents and host modulator agents. More active treatment, such as surgical treatment, is usually not required after scaling-root planing in initial cases. In cases where periodontal health cannot be achieved with non-surgical treatment, surgical treatment may be needed to restore periodontal anatomy and facilitate oral hygiene.
Periodontal surgical treatment : In cases where health cannot be achieved with non-surgical treatment, surgical treatment is performed. These are: Pocket depth reduction, regenerative procedures, crown height increase, soft tissue grafts.
Cosmetic procedures: In addition to the treatment of periodontal diseases, periodontal treatment includes many cosmetic procedures necessary to provide the ideal smile. These procedures are:
Crown height elevation, soft tissue grafts, ridge augmentation
As a result ;
Health begins in the mouth. For this reason, in order to gain and maintain gingival health, regularly applying to the dentist every 6 months, performing professional periodontal treatment, and most importantly brushing the teeth for at least 2 minutes 3 times a day and performing interface care using dental floss or an interface brush. required.