Periodontal Disease Specialist

My Woodbridge Dental

Family Dentist located in Woodbridge, VA

Your gum health is absolutely critical in your ability to protect your teeth long-term. In fact, periodontal disease is one of the leading causes of tooth loss. Each time you visit My Woodbridge Dental in Woodbridge, Virginia, Sachi Patel, DDS, checks your gum health. If she does find signs of periodontal disease, she starts you with treatment to protect your oral health. Keep your gums healthy by calling the office or booking an appointment online today.

Periodontal Disease Q & A

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is any disease that affects the health of your gums. The earliest phase of periodontal disease is gingivitis, an extremely common oral condition that usually comes with easy-to-miss symptoms. 

Left untreated, gingivitis often develops into periodontitis, a more serious periodontal disease. If periodontitis goes unaddressed, it can lead to tooth loss. 

What is gingivitis?

Gingivitis is a mild form of periodontal disease — but that doesn’t mean it’s not a big concern. A result of poor oral hygiene, gingivitis causes your gums to get inflamed, leaving them looking red and swollen. They might be tender and bleed easily. 

If gingivitis is caught early, proper oral care — including brushing and flossing diligently at home and regularly getting professional teeth cleanings at My Woodbridge Dental — is usually enough to reverse it. But left unchecked, it causes your gums to recede and form pockets around your teeth. This allows bacteria and debris to collect below your gumline, commonly leading to periodontitis. 

The symptoms from gingivitis usually aren’t readily apparent, especially in its early phases. Getting your teeth examined biannually at My Woodbridge Dental ensures Dr. Patel can appraise your gum health, putting any necessary treatments in place if she sees the signs of gingivitis.

What is periodontitis?

Periodontitis is a more advanced form of periodontal disease. It’s marked by plaque forming on your teeth below your gumline, irritating your gums. Over time, this plaque can destroy your gum tissue and your teeth. Left untreated, this causes your tooth to loosen and can lead to tooth loss. 

Fortunately, Dr. Patel offers treatment for even late-stage periodontitis. In many cases, this means scaling and root planing. During this procedure, Dr. Patel reaches under your gumline, scraping the plaque away from the root of the tooth. Once this scaling is complete, she then planes the tooth root, smoothing it to encourage the gum tissue to reattach to it. 

No matter which periodontal disease is impacting your gum health, early treatment is important in protecting your teeth. What’s more, when Dr. Patel catches your periodontal disease early, she can use less invasive treatments to reverse it. 

Keep your gums healthy with biannual exams at My Woodbridge Dental. To schedule yours and defend against periodontal disease, call the office or book your visit online today.