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Stop Gum Disease Before It Threatens Your Dental Implants

Stop Gum Disease Before It Threatens Your Dental Implants

Stop Gum Disease Before It Threatens Your Dental Implants

No matter how strong your jaw is, you also need to have healthy gums in order to be a candidate for dental implants. When you come to Dr. Kaeley for your consultation, one of the things she’ll look for will be the signs of gum disease, otherwise known as periodontal disease. If she discovers that you do indeed have gum disease, then she’ll need to treat that first and foremost, and possibly remove infected tissues, before she can move on to your dental implants.

Many patients don’t realize that gum disease is actually one of the leading causes of tooth loss in the U.S. Your gums are a vital part of your overall oral health, yet many people simply don’t follow the basic oral health procedures they can do to keep their gums healthy – namely, brushing and flossing daily. And of course, coming to Progressive Periodontics And Implant Dentistry, San Ramon, CA for regular cleanings and exams.

How Does Gum Disease Affect Oral Health?

Gum disease can be especially problematic in its advanced stages. In fact, many patients are surprised to learn that gum disease is actually the leading cause of tooth loss in adulthood. The reason periodontal disease affects oral health in such a profound way is the fact that it separates teeth from their supportive structures (bone mass and gum tissue). When tartar buildup accumulates along the gum line, it will infect periodontal tissue and cause gums to recede from teeth. Over time, especially if bone is affected, teeth will become loose because they lack support. Without proper treatment, teeth will eventually fall out. Additionally, research has shown a link between periodontal disease and other health conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and stroke.

Signs And Symptoms Of Periodontal Disease

It’s important to understand that you can have periodontal disease with no obvious symptoms, especially if you are a smoker (nicotine reduces blood supply preventing bleeding and swelling of the gum tissues). Still, there are some important things to look for:

  • Bleeding Gums — Some people think that when their gums bleed, it simply means they’re brushing too hard. While brushing too hard is bad for the gums, it should not cause bleeding. Any bleeding of the gums should be considered a warning sign of gum disease.
  • Bad Breath — It’s very easy for plaque to collect in the spaces between the teeth, creating the perfect living conditions for bacteria that produce odorous, sulfur-containing compounds, resulting in bad breath.
  • Redness or Swelling of the Gums — Inflammation of the gums is usually the first visible sign of periodontal disease.
  • Receding Gums — If you notice that your teeth look longer than they used to, it may be that your gum tissue has receded (away from the enamel), exposing some of your tooth roots.
  • Sensitivity — If there is gum recession, the exposed roots may become sensitive to hot or cold.
  • Periodontal Abscess — Bacteria can become enclosed in a periodontal pocket and the area will fill with pus, becoming swollen and painful.
  • Loose Teeth — When periodontal disease results in bone loss, teeth can become loose or migrate. Tooth loss can result and may be accelerated if you are applying excessive biting forces from clenching or grinding your teeth.

Peri-Implant Disease

Peri-implant diseases are inflammatory conditions affecting the soft and hard gum tissues around dental implants. Similar to a natural tooth, bacteria can build up on the base of the implant, below the gum line. Over time, the bacteria irritate the gum tissue, causing it to become inflamed, damaging the tissue and if not caught early, causing the bone structure below the implant to deteriorate.

Peri-Implant Diseases Are Classified into Two Categories:

  • In Peri-Implant Mucositis, gum inflammation is found only around the soft tissues of the dental implant, with no signs of bone loss. Generally peri-implant mucositis is a precursor to peri-implantitis. Evidence suggests that peri-implant mucositis may be successfully treated and is reversible if caught early.
  • In Peri-Implantitis, gum inflammation is found around the soft tissue and there is deterioration in the bone supporting the dental implant. Peri-implantitis usually requires surgical treatment.

Peri-Implantitis And Its Management

In light of the aforementioned evidence and given the continuously increasing number of implants placed in everyday clinical practice, it is reasonable to anticipate an increasing prevalence of peri-implantitis, which underlines the necessity for a predictable therapy. Peri-imlantitis and its causes is still poorly understood. The decision process for peri-implantitis maintenance and treatment should be a rational and evidence-based approach.

The oral microflora seems to be a defining factor for the success or the failure of a dental implant. As soon as an implant surface is exposed to the oral cavity, it becomes immediately covered by a protein layer – the salivary pellicle – and is colonized by oral microorganisms, forming a microbial biofilm Therapeutic strategies proposed for managing peri-implant diseases appear to be largely based on either the evidence available for treating periodontitis or on clinical empirical values but not on particular scientific findings. Surface debridements constitute the basic element for treating both periodontitis and peri-implantitis.

However, the screw-shaped design of the implants, combined with various surface modifications of titanium, may facilitate plaque accumulation, resulting in bacterial biofilm formation. Mechanical debridement on such surfaces may have a limited effect and can certainly not result in the complete removal of all adhering microorganisms. Therefore, adjunctive peri-implant therapies, such as antibiotics, antiseptics, and ultrasonic and laser treatments, have been proposed to improve the non-surgical treatment options of peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis. Regenerative procedures using a bone graft substitute in combination with a membrane have been proposed to treat bone defects in advanced cases of peri-implantitis.

#1. Local Debridement

The implant should be cleaned by instruments softer than titanium, such as polishing with a rubber cup and paste, floss, interdental brushes, or using plastic scaling instruments. These have been shown not to roughen the implant surface unlike metal and ultrasonic scalers. Although implant surface damage can almost be prevented by using either ultrasonic scalers with a nonmetallic tip or resin/carbon fiber curettes, the presence of implant threads and/or implant surface roughness may compromise the access for cleaning.

#2. Implant Surface Decontamination

Photodynamic therapy is a non-invasive method that could be used to reduce microorganisms in peri-implantitis. 2% chlorhexidine or 3% hydrogen peroxide can be used as topical antiseptics. Decontamination of affected implants with titanium plasma-sprayed or sandblasted/acid-etched surfaces may most easily and effectively be achieved by applying gauze soaked alternately in chlorhexidine and saline.

#3. Anti-Infective Therapy

Specific microbial information regarding the presence of putative pathogens is indispensible to make a meaningful decision regarding systemic or local antibiotic therapy. Although the composition of the subgingival microbial component is important for the choice of the drug, oral distribution patterns of potential pathogens are also important in deciding whether an antimicrobial agent should be administered locally or systemically. To accomplish this task, clinician needs to look at the periodontal condition of the residual teeth.

#4. Surgical Technique

Surgical resection is generally confined to implants placed in non-aesthetic sites. Surgical flap helps in comprehensive debridement and decontamination of the affected implant. Surgical therapy was carried out, using:

  • Autogeneous bone grafts covered by membranes
  • Autogeneous bone grafts alone
  • Membranes alone
  • A control access flap procedure

This procedures showed that defects treated with membrane-covered autogenous bone demonstrated significantly larger amounts of bone regeneration and reosseointegration than those treated with the other three procedures. However, membrane exposure is a frequent complication after such procedures. Exposure of porous e-PTFE membranes may result in bacterial penetration and lead to infection.

Schedule A Consultation With Dr. Kaeley Today At San Ramon

Dr. Kaeley, one of the best periodontal dentist in the San Francisco Bay Area, shall provide you custom treatment options for your periodontal needs. If you think you might be suffering from gum disease or if you have inflamed, sore or bleeding gumsSchedule An Appointment with us immediately. We even offer customized sedation options for our patients in San Ramon who experience anxiety about going to the dentist. We want all of our patients to feel totally relaxed and comfortable during their visits with us.

Gum disease can cause tremendous harm to your overall health and should be treated as soon as possible. After you call, the first step will be for us to setup a time for you to come into our San Ramon office near Pleasanton, Meet Best Periodontist Dr. Kaeley at Progressive Periodontics and Implant Dentistry at San Ramon, CA and discuss your concerns and questions with her. From there, Dr. Kaeley will work with you to develop a customized treatment plan that fits your needs and get you back on the road towards optimal health.


We look forward to providing families with exceptional care and advanced treatment options. To Schedule An Appointment with Dr. Kaeley contact our San Ramon, CA, dental office today by calling (925) 860-7071. Our office welcomes new patients in and around San Ramon, CA, including Dublin, Pleasanton, Danville, Blackhawk, Walnut Creek, Lafayette, Castro Valley, Pleasant Hill and the surrounding Contra Costa County communities.

Dr Kaeley

Dr. Janice Kaeley, a periodontist, is committed to providing the highest level of care with compassion and understanding for every patient. Dr. Kaeley is delighted to provide the most current periodontal procedures to the community of San Ramon. From the moment you meet her, Dr. Kaeley’s passion for dentistry is evident. She takes the time necessary to educate her patients and help each patient find the right path of treatment for them based on all relevant clinical findings.

9301 Fircrest Lane,

San Ramon, CA 94583

(925) 860-7071

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