Periodontal treatment is aimed at controlling the diseases affecting the periodontium (the area around the tooth), and which affect the bone support holding the tooth, causing later tooth loss.

Periodontal disease appears in the form of:

  • Gingivitis: Inflammation of the gum without affecting the alveolar bone. It appears as a red, oedematous gum which bleeds easily.
  • Peridontitis (previously called pyorrhoea): this is characterised by the destruction of the bone which supports the tooth and with time ends up with tooth loss if it is not treated. Clinically, it appears as an inflamed gum with periodontal balls (gaps between the gum and the tooth), which will be assessed with a small probe that measures the distance between the gum and the bone. There may also be movement and exposure of the root which will be highly sensitive to temperature.

    Periodontal disease is very frequent in humans. Gingivitis affects around 75% of children and young and periodontitis can affect almost 50% of adults, and is advanced in 18% of cases.

    In most cases it is possible to stop the bone destruction process and preserve the teeth. It is not a problem to recover healthy gums either, but we must bear in mind that the destroyed bone is very difficult to restore and therefore in patients who have practically no support bone, nothing can be done. This is why it is convenient to treat periodontal disease from its onset.

    The principal cause of periodontal disease is bacteria we have in our mouth around the teeth, and which, if not eliminated, are deposited between the tooth and the inflamed gum. They are later capable of moving under the gum and migrating through the root to destroy the bone that supports the teeth. Certain people are predisposed to developing the disease.

    The signs of periodontal disease are the following:

    • Redness in the gums.
    • Bleeding in the gums when brushing or spontaneously.
    • Appearance of abscesses in the gum with suppuration and bad breath.
    • Increased to sensitivity to cold.
    • Retraction of gums with a sensation of longer teeth and gaps between them.
    • Tooth movement.