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Periodontal Disease

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Periodontal disease, commonly called gum disease, is a prevalent condition affecting the gums and bone structure supporting the teeth. At Guthrie Dental in Manheim, PA, we understand the importance of healthy gums for overall oral health. Our comprehensive treatment approaches, including SRP/deep cleanings, debridements, and the use of Arestin, aim to restore gum health and prevent future complications.


Recognizing the symptoms of periodontal disease is the first step toward seeking timely treatment. Common signs include:

  • Swollen or red gums
  • Persistent bad breath
  • Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
  • Receding gums
  • Loose or shifting teeth
  • Formation of deep pockets between teeth and gums
  • Pain when chewing

Why This is Needed

Untreated periodontal disease can lead to severe complications. The infection can destroy the bone that supports your teeth, leading to tooth loss. Moreover, research suggests a link between periodontal disease and other health issues, such as heart disease and diabetes. Addressing gum disease early ensures better oral health and overall well-being.

Treatment Process

At Guthrie Dental, the treatment process for periodontal disease is thorough and tailored to individual needs. The steps typically include:

  • Evaluation: Dr. Guthrie first assesses the depth of the pockets between the teeth and gums using specialized instruments.
  • SRP/Deep Cleaning: Scaling and Root Planing (SRP) is a non-surgical procedure. Scaling involves removing plaque and tartar from above and below the gumline. Root planing smoothens the root surfaces, discouraging further tartar buildup and promoting gum reattachment.
  • Debridements: If there’s a significant plaque and tartar buildup, a full mouth debridement is performed to remove the extensive deposits.
  • Arestin Therapy: Post-SRP, Arestin, an antibiotic, might be placed inside the pockets to combat the bacteria and reduce the depth of the pockets, promoting healing.

Guarding Against Gum Disease

To circumvent the recurrence of periodontal disease, a proactive approach is necessary. Impeccable oral hygiene forms the bedrock of prevention. Regular brushing, preferably after every meal, removes food particles and fights off harmful bacteria. Flossing daily, especially before bedtime, ensures that spaces between teeth, often breeding grounds for bacteria, remain clean.

Beyond personal dental care routines, professional intervention is paramount. Routine check-ups and professional cleanings at Guthrie Dental act as a safeguard, spotting potential issues before they escalate. Incorporating an antimicrobial mouthwash into your daily regimen can be a significant asset, further reducing the presence of plaque-causing bacteria. Furthermore, it’s pivotal to acknowledge lifestyle habits; tobacco usage, for instance, substantially heightens the risk for gum disease. Eradicating such habits can be a game-changer in maintaining gum health.

A dental professional explaining the importance of your gums to prevent Periodontal Disease

The Positive Path Forward for Gum Health

Periodontal disease, once a daunting diagnosis, has seen a shift in narrative thanks to the strides in dental medicine. The early detection and treatment of this condition can not only halt its progress but, in many instances, reverse its effects entirely. This optimism is largely attributed to state-of-the-art treatments available today. SRP, for instance, delves deep, cleaning and preparing the gum pockets to heal and reattach, while debridements rid the gums of unwanted debris, fostering an environment conducive to healing.

Incorporating Arestin post-treatment acts as a potent weapon, targeting and eliminating disease-causing bacteria deep within the gum pockets. With such comprehensive treatment plans available at clinics like Guthrie Dental and an individual’s commitment to diligent oral care, the battle against periodontal disease becomes decidedly winnable. Patients can now envision a future where their smile remains untouched by the ravages of gum disease, gleaming healthily for decades on end.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is periodontal disease?

A: Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is a condition that affects the gums and the bone supporting the teeth. If left untreated, it can lead to tooth loss and other oral health complications.

Q: How is Scaling and Root Planing (SRP) different from regular cleaning?

A: While regular dental cleaning removes plaque and tartar above the gumline, SRP goes deeper. It involves cleaning both above and below the gumline and smoothing the root surfaces to prevent further tartar buildup and to promote gum reattachment.

Q: Is Arestin therapy necessary after SRP?

A: Arestin is an antibiotic that can be placed inside the pockets formed due to periodontal disease. While it’s not always necessary for everyone, Dr. Guthrie might recommend Arestin post-SRP to combat bacteria effectively and reduce pocket depth, fostering better healing.

Ready for a Healthier Smile?

Don’t let gum problems go untreated. For comprehensive periodontal disease treatment tailored to your needs, call Guthrie Dental at (717) 879-9700. Let Dr. Guthrie and our team help you regain a healthy, radiant smile.

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