Cleanings & Gum Disease Treatment in San Antonio
High-tech hygiene for a healthy, clean smile!
Gum (periodontal) disease is the leading cause of adult tooth loss and can negatively affect not only the health of your teeth and gums, but of your body, as well. Research shows illness and disease in other areas of the body are linked to gum disease.
Healthy teeth and gums are the foundation for a beautiful smile. Cosmetic procedures come out best when the overall oral health of the patient is made just as important as aesthetics. Dr. Camacho takes this approach and will make sure your smile is not only beautiful, but healthy too.
Count on ultramodern, expert gum care
Dr. Edward Camacho uses the latest advances in dentistry today to treat gum disease effectively. He combines a deep cleaning, gentle ultrasonic gum therapy, soft-tissue laser treatment, antibiotic therapy, probiotic therapy, and oral DNA testing to fight gum disease.
Dr. Camacho places a heavy emphasis on educating patients on their oral health. His highly trained hygienist offers expert gum disease prevention counseling. Helping you brush and floss properly and prevent gum disease is something we will work with you on continually.
Gentle and thorough ultrasonic cleanings
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47% of American adults over 30 have periodontal disease. The first line of defense in preventing gum disease is to get thorough, regular cleanings. You can rely on our experienced hygienist to be very gentle, but thorough, during your cleaning.
The ultrasonic scaler is very effective in cleaning excessive calcium deposits or heavy stains, and makes teeth cleaning on orthodontic patients much easier. Ultrasonic scaling is more comfortable and efficient than hand scaling. Ultrasonic scalers vibrate at a frequency that breaks down bacteria and removes tarter, calculus and plaque without harming your teeth like traditional scrapers can.
With this state-of-the-art sound wave technology, our hygienist can clean your teeth with minimal discomfort, fast and effectively. And after your cleaning she’ll polish them so they are shiny and bright!
What exactly is gum disease?
Gum disease is the inflammation of the soft gum tissue and leads to loss of bone that surrounds the teeth and holds them in place. It is caused by toxins from bacteria in plaque that accumulate along the gum line. This plaque is a combination of bacteria, saliva and food.
Gum infection, swelling, pain, and further bone destruction is caused by gum disease. Advanced gum disease, which can cause the loss of otherwise healthy teeth, is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults.
Signs and symptoms of gum disease
Gum disease is often a “silent” disease. This means that symptoms might not appear until an advanced stage of the disease. If it is diagnosed in the early stages, gum disease can be treated easily. Here are some of the warning signs of gum disease:
- Loose or separating permanent teeth
- Gums feel tender or hurt when touched
- New spaces developing between your teeth
- Persistent bad breath or bad taste in the mouth
- Sores in your mouth
- Gums that bleed while brushing, flolssing or eating hard food
- Red, swollen or tender gums or other pain in your mouth
- Pus in between your teeth and gums
- Gums that are receding from your teeth, making your teeth look longer than normal
- Changes in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
Effective Gum Disease Treatment
Scaling, the first step, is the removal of tartar from your teeth by our hygienist using either a hand or ultrasonic scaler.
Next our hygienist will carefully plane (smooth) the root surfaces to help prevent tartar buildup in the future. Smooth root surfaces allow your gums to regenerate without irritation. After root planing the gum tissue shrinks and tightens around the teeth, since the irritant has been eliminated.
If you have gum disease, your teeth will need a deep scaling. This procedure is done by cleaning the surface of the teeth with an instrument called a dental curette. This removes calculus (tartar) and infected gum tissue from tooth root surfaces.
Dr. Camacho’s highly educated hygienist has special training in laser gum treatment. Designed for the soft-tissues of the mouth, our NV Microlaser disinfects the gums and helps remove and kill bacteria that cause gum disease. The NV Microlaser is very precise and promotes both comfortable care and rapid healing. So time in the dental chair is greatly reduced and patients heal faster.
EvoraPlus® probiotic mints naturally support gum and tooth health with healthy bacteria. The healthy bacteria crowd out the harmful bacteria to promote a positive balance in your mouth. Healthy bacteria fight fungus as well as gum disease. The beneficial bacteria also work to inhibit bad breath and naturally whiten teeth without creating tooth sensitivity or gum irritation.
To help combat gum disease, Dr. Camacho employs The Perio Protect Method®. This is an effective, sensible approach to treat bacteria that cause gum disease. At the heart of the Method is the adjunctive Perio Tray® delivery of medication. The basic idea is to get medication under the gums and into the pockets where bacteria grow and keep it there long enough for the medication to work, all in a comfortable, non-invasive way. Not a simple task. That’s why the Perio Tray is such an important advancement.
The Perio Tray is easy to use. You put the medication into the trays, wear the trays at home as instructed by your dentist and, well, that’s it, until you return to the dentist for a recall visit. It’s comfortable, it works well, and it’s convenient. The Perio Protect Method’s combination of Perio Tray delivery with thorough cleanings from a dental office is the least invasive approach available, and research shows better results than cleaning alone.
Perio Trays are custom fit for individual use. They have a special seal and extension system that correspond to the conditions of the gums around each tooth. The seals and extensions help direct and maintain medication under the gums to the site of the infected wounds. For most people, treatment time amounts to minutes each day. As healing occurs and conditions improve, dentists will modify your frequency and duration of usage, gradually decreasing patient usage until the infection is under control and the disease is well managed. You can then follow a home-care maintenance schedule to keep the bacteria at bay.
Oral DNA salivary testing
At our office, we use clinical laboratory services from OralDNA Labs® to ensure we are giving our patients the best oral health information possible. OralDNA Labs® is a specialty diagnostics company designed to provide reliable, definitive and cost effective clinical tests that guide oral health professionals in detecting and prognosing disease at an earlier, more treatable stage.
Salivary diagnostic testing is done to check for specific bacteria present in the saliva that are known to cause periodontal disease. The testing enables Dr. Camacho to establish which patients are at increased risk for more severe periodontal infections so he can give you the proper treatment. Oral DNA testing can even detect if you have a genetic predisposition to periodontal disease.
ARESTIN® antibiotic therapy
Scaling and root planing are effective at reducing plaque but they do not kill all the bacteria causing gum disease. To reach all the periodontal pockets where bacteria reside Dr. Camacho often recommends a locally administered antibiotic called ARESTIN® antibiotic therapy.
ARESTIN is a tetracycline-based antibiotic that helps kill bacteria at the root of the problem. ARESTIN contains tiny, bead-like particles called microspheres that are invisible to the naked eye. These microspheres release the antibiotic over time, killing bacteria so your gums can better heal.