Category Archives: Periodontal

Treatment Options for Gum Disease | Oak Lawn Dentist

If you’ve recently been informed that you have gum disease, you’re not alone. Periodontal disease can range from inflamed gums to serious disease that can cause tooth loss. There are many signs and symptoms that come along with periodontal disease, but because it’s a painless disease, oftentimes people don’t even realize they have it. The following includes the signs and symptoms of periodontal disease:

  • Bad taste in mouth or persistent bad breath
  • Red or inflamed gums
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Gum recession or longer appearing teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Sensitive teeth

The primary purpose of periodontal treatment is to control the infection. Any type of periodontal treatment requires the patient to practice proper oral hygiene at home. Dentists may also suggest that the patient change certain habits, such as smoking, as a way to improve the overall outcome.

Deep cleaning. This periodontal treatment involves removing built-up plaque though a method called root planing and scaling. This gets rid of the rough spots on the patient’s teeth where germs accumulate, helping remove harmful bacteria that can contribute to periodontal disease.

Medications. In some cases, medication may be used with treatments that include root planing and scaling, but they can’t always take the place of oral surgery. Common medications used include antibiotic gels, oral antibiotics and prescription antimicrobial mouthwashes.

Oral surgery. The periodontal treatments that involve oral surgery include flap surgery, which helps further rid built-up tartar in deep pockets, bone and tissues grafts. Bone and tissue grafts help regenerate a bone and tissue that was lost.

If you would like to find out more about periodontal treatment, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to schedule a consultation. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information.

Dr. Bartz proudly serves Oak Lawn, Chicago, Orland Park, Burbank, Palos Hills and all surrounding areas.

Gum Contouring: A Smile Secret Agent | Oak Lawn Dentist

Ask yourself – what is the physical feature you find most attractive? Chances are you said the smile. They come in all shapes and variations, but aren’t always what we think of is a pretty one. And when it comes to cosmetic procedures, our minds automatically go to things like bleaching, veneers and braces. But there is a procedure out there many don’t know about but wish they did. It’s called gum contouring.

You may not directly relate your smile to your gums, but they are the tools used to keep your teeth in place. Sometimes the gums cover too much of the teeth, giving the impression that their teeth are shorter than they really are. This is known as a gummy smile.

A gummy smile is perfectly acceptable for most people, and uneven gums are a fairly common problem. Some people are just born with it, while there are those whose gums become uneven as they grow older. These are other factors that may lead to developing a gummy smile:

  • Improper brushing and flossing techniques
  • Smoking or chewing tobacco
  • Frequent teeth grinding
  • Oral piercings
  • Sensitivity to certain chemicals
  • Shifting teeth
  • Periodontal disease

Gum contouring has long been around as a cosmetic procedure but has begun to gain in popularity since modern dental medicine now allows dental practitioners to completely bypass the use of scalpels. Instead, soft tissue lasers are used to slowly and gently scalp the gums. This helps speed up the healing process, as well as to prevent any bleeding. So if you feel gum contouring can improve your smile, make a dental visit today!

If you would like to find out more about gum contouring, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to schedule a consultation. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information.

Dr. Bartz proudly serves Oak Lawn, Chicago, Orland Park, Burbank, Palos Hills and all surrounding areas.

Is the Pain in Your Mouth a Toothache? | Oak Lawn Dentist

Nobody likes to have a toothache. Most people feel pain in their mouth and assume they have a cavity. While decay can certainly cause pain, not all toothaches are caused by decay or cavities. Here’s a quick guide on what may cause the pain:

If you feel sharp pains when you eat or drink hot or cold food, you may have a cavity. However, it could also be sensitivity from exposed dentin. Exposed dentin is caused by either thinning or breaks in your enamel, like cracked or chipped teeth, or receding gums. A cracked tooth may cause pain deep in your jaw or gums when you bite down. The pressure of biting can put pressure on nerves, causing intense pain.

Throbbing pain, especially on one side of the mouth, may be caused by an infection below the tooth, often related to periodontal disease or dental abscess. Left untreated, the infection may spread to the bone, and potentially causing loss of gum tissue.

In many cases, mouth pain may not be related to dental problems at all – sinus issues and problems of the TMJ (jaw/skull joint) can both cause pain in the mouth and face, but aren’t necessarily dental problems.

This may give you an idea of what your dental problem may be, but it’s impossible to diagnose and treat the problem without your dentist looking at your teeth in person. In many cases the problem will get worse if left untreated so make sure to make an appointment as soon as you begin to have any pain.

If you would like to find out more about toothaches, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to schedule a consultation. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information.

Dr. Bartz proudly serves Oak Lawn, Chicago, Orland Park, Burbank, Palos Hills and all surrounding areas.

Root Planing and Scaling: Why Do I Need It? | Oak Lawn Dentist

ThinkstockPhotos-464323669Hearing you have periodontal disease, is never great news to receive. Any sort of gum disease is going to be somewhat disheartening. Worry not, many adults currently have some form of the disease, or will have at some point in their lives. Periodontal diseases range from simple gum inflammation to serious disease that results in major damage to the soft tissue and bone that support the teeth. Worst case scenario, the teeth will be lost. Whether your gum disease is stopped, slowed, or gets worse depends on how well you have been taking care for your teeth and gums on a daily basis.

Whether you believe it or not, your mouth is full of bacteria. These bacteria, along with saliva and food particles, constantly form a sticky colorless film, or plaque, on your teeth. Your brushing, paired with regular flossing, will help get rid of plaque. Plaque that is not removed can harden and form tartar. Unfortunately, tartar cannot be removed by brushing. Only a professional cleaning by a dentist or dental hygienist can remove tartar.

Again, this is where your daily hygiene comes into play. If you neglect your teeth and it becomes excessive, your dentist will remove the plaque through a deep-cleaning method called scaling and root planing. Scaling means scraping off the tartar from above and below the gum line. Root planing and scaling cleans between the gums and the teeth down to the roots.  In some cases, a laser may be used to remove plaque and tartar. Sounds intimidating, but this procedure can result in less bleeding, swelling, and discomfort compared to traditional deep cleaning methods.

Root planing and scaling is done when gums have either started to pull away from the teeth or the roots of the teeth have hard mineral deposits (tartar) on them. Gum recession is a pretty serious condition in and of itself. But if you maintain good dental care after the procedure, the progression of gum disease should stop and your gums will heal and become firm and pink again.

But root planing and scaling does have its risks. The procedure can introduce harmful bacteria into the bloodstream. Gum tissue is also at risk of infection. You may need to take antibiotics before and after surgery if you have a condition that puts you at high risk for a severe infection or if infections are particularly dangerous for you.

All in all, root planing and scaling is a simple procedure that can work very well to stop gum disease. But it is important to realize that poor dental hygiene is what leads to gum disease. And that’s all up to you. Brush and floss regularly. See your dentist regularly. Proper oral hygiene is the key to avoiding dental pitfalls.

If you suspect that you may be suffering from a form of periodontal disease, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to schedule a consultation. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information regarding periodontal disease.

Dr. Bartz proudly serves Oak Lawn, Chicago, Orland Park, Burbank, Palos Hills and all surrounding areas.

5 Myths About Periodontal Disease | Lawn Oak, IL

periodontal diseaseAccording to the American Academy of Periodontology an estimate of approximately three out of four Americans suffer from some form of periodontal disease, also known as gum disease. Periodontal disease ranges from a mild stage referred to as gingivitis to a more severe stage called periodontitis. This bacterial gum infection destroys the attachment fibers and supporting bone that holds your teeth in place. Though this disease has be highly publicized, many people still don’t take periodontal disease seriously because of certain myths and misconceptions that surround it. In this post I’ll be dispelling the truth behind the myths about periodontal disease.

Myth #1: Flossing my teeth isn’t important.

Fact: False. On top of brushing your teeth twice a day, you should be flossing at least once a day as to prevent gum disease. According to a survey that was released by Delta Dental, only 4 in 10 adults floss their teeth every day. Flossing your teeth is one of the best way to prevent gingivitis, a form of gum disease.

Myth #2: My bleeding gum are no big deal.

Fact: Let’s put it this way, think of your gum tissue the same as your hands. If your hands were to bleed every time you washed them, wouldn’t you worry? If your gums are red, swollen, or bleeding, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist. They will be able to suggest the best periodontal treatment.

Myth #3: Poor oral hygiene is the only way I can get periodontal disease.

Fact: While poor oral hygiene is the primary cause of periodontal disease, there are other certain factors that can increase ones risk. The use of tobacco products, a poor diet, stressing, pregnancy and genetics can all contribute to periodontal.

Myth #4: I don’t have cavities so I don’t have periodontal disease.

Fact: While you may be cavity-free, it still doesn’t ensure that you are in the clear where periodontal disease is concerned. This is because periodontal disease is painless and several people don’t even know that they have it. Of course, gums that’s bleed easily or are red, swollen or tender are signs of gingivitis, which happens to be the only stage that’s reversible with periodontal treatment and practicing proper oral hygiene.

Myth #5: Having periodontal disease means I’m going to lose my teeth.

Fact: Once again, this is false. You won’t have to lose any teeth to periodontal is you practice proper oral hygiene on a daily basis. This involves brushing twice a day, flossing once a day, eating a healthy diet and visiting your dentist for checkups and professional cleanings every six months. Even if you are diagnosed with periodontal disease, your dentist will be able to design a periodontal treatment plan to keep it under control.

If you suspect that you may be suffering from a form of periodontal disease, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to schedule a consultation. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information regarding periodontal disease.

What Are The Three Stages Of Periodontal Disease? | Oak Lawn, IL

Periodontal DiseaseIf you’ve recently been told that you’re suffering from periodontal disease, you are not alone. Nearly 75% of Americans suffer from some form of periodontal disease, also known as gum disease. Periodontal disease is a chronic inflammation and infection of the gums which can progress to affect the bone and tissues that surround and support your teeth.

Periodontal disease is typically caused due to improper oral hygiene, however in some cases it can be caused by certain medications, hormonal changes, among other certain factors. When you aren’t practicing proper oral hygiene, you’re allowing the bacteria in plaque to remain on your teeth, which will eventually infect your gums. Not only will periodontal disease affect your gums and teeth, but it can potentially affect your connective tissue and bone that supports your teeth as well. There are three stages of gum disease: gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis. Gum disease often exhibits worsening symptom as time goes on.

  • Gingivitis- Gingivitis is the mildest form of periodontal disease, and can be noticed by inflamed gums, red or swollen gums, which is mainly caused by the plaque buildup. This stage of the disease can also cause your gums to bleed, which you may notice when brushing or flossing your teeth. This is the only stage of periodontal that is reversible with periodontal treatment.
  • Periodontitis- When gingivitis is left untreated it progresses to a more advanced stage, known as periodontitis. At this particular stage the supporting bone and tissues will be irreversibly damaged. Your gums will also start to separate from your teeth, then form pockets below the gum line that become infected. . With periodontal treatment and improved oral hygiene you and your dentist can usually prevent any further damage.
  • Advanced Periodontitis- This is the final stage of periodontal disease, not only has the infection affected your teeth, but it has also destroyed the fibers and bones that support your teeth. This can affect your bite and cause your teeth to shift, loosen and/or even fall out. If periodontal treatment can’t save your teeth, your dentist may have to remove them.

Periodontal disease does not discriminate and can occur to anyone at any age, however it is more common in adults. As mentioned earlier, if periodontal disease is detected in its early stages, it can be reversed.

If you suspect that you may be suffering from periodontal disease, contact Dr. Bartz in Oak Lawn, IL at 708-430-4440 to see which periodontal treatment best suits your needs. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information regarding periodontal treatment.

What Are Common Periodontal Treatments?

periodontal diseaseIf you’ve recently been informed that you have periodontal disease, commonly known as gum disease, you’re not alone. There are many people in the U.S. that suffer from some form of periodontal disease. Periodontal disease can range from inflamed gums to serious disease that can cause tooth loss. Whether a patient’s gum disease is stopped, slowed or gets worse ultimately depends on them and how well they care for teeth and gums.

Signs and symptoms of periodontal disease

There are many signs and symptoms that come along with periodontal disease, however, some people don’t even realize they have it, due to it being a painless disease. The following includes the signs and symptoms of periodontal disease:

  • Bad taste in mouth or persistent bad breath
  • Red or inflamed gums
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Gum recession or longer appearing teeth
  • Loose teeth
  • Sensitive teeth

What are the most common periodontal treatments?

The primary purpose of periodontal treatment is to control the infection. The number and type of periodontal treatments vary, depending on the how far the disease has progressed. Any type of periodontal treatment requires the patient to practice proper oral hygiene at home. Dentists may also suggest that the patient change certain habits, such as smoking, as a way to improve the overall outcome.

  • Deep Cleaning- This periodontal treatment involves a dentist, periodontist or oral hygienist removing built-up plaque though a method called root planing and scaling. This gets rid of the rough spots on the patient’s teeth where germs accumulate, and also helps remove harmful bacteria that can contribute to periodontal disease. In some cases, a dental laser may be used.
  • Medications- In some cases, medication may be used with treatments that include root planing and scaling, but they can’t always take the place of oral surgery. Dentists base whether or not you should have oral surgery based on how far the patient’s gum disease has progressed. More studies are still needed to see if medication can work long-term. Common medications used include antibiotic gels, oral antibiotics and prescription antimicrobial mouthwashes.

Your dentist may suggest that you have oral surgery to help control your periodontal disease. The periodontal treatments that involve oral surgery include flap surgery, which helps further rid built-up tartar in deep pockets, and bone and tissues grafts. Bone and tissue grafts help regenerate a bone and tissue that was lost due to periodontal disease.

If you’re seeking ways to treat gum disease, contact Dr. Bartz at 708-430-4440 to see which periodontal treatment best suits your needs. Or visit www.bartzandbartzdental.com for additional information regarding periodontal treatment.

The Link Between Diabetes and Periodontal Disease | Oak Lawn, IL Dentist

Healthy food in heart and cholesterol diet concept

Diabetes is a serious health complication that, in much simpler terms, means that you have too much sugar or glucose in your blood. There are two types of diabetes, but regardless of which of the two you have, you’re basically facing a lifelong bout with diabetes medication.

Diabetes affects the whole body, including your mouth and gums. Though, to what extent depends on how well you’re able to discipline yourself in terms of controlling your blood sugar.

If kept under control, diabetes should have little to no effect on oral health. But, if left unchecked, the effects of diabetes on the mouth and gums can be dramatic.

Those with diabetes are susceptible to the following:

  • Increasingly progressive gum disease
  • Gingivitis
  • Xerostomia, or dry mouth, which can also lead to periodontal disease
  • Poor healing in the mouth
  • Thrush or oral candidiasis
  • Burning sensation in the mouth and/or tongue

Diabetes, if left unchecked, can significantly affect your body’s white blood cells, making your body much weaker against infections. Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection, which is why those with uncontrolled diabetes are more susceptible to it and also why those with diabetes, in general, tend to suffer from worse cases of gum disease.

If you’re suffering from both diabetes and periodontal disease, it’s important to get treatment. Successful treatment of gum disease can help keep diabetes under control, as any type of infection can cause blood sugar levels to rise. Once the infection is treated, your blood sugar levels may go back down to normal, making it easier to keep your diabetes in check without always having to rely on medication.

Going to the Dentist

The first step in keeping your diabetes under control is to inform your dentist about the history of your condition. Your dentist should know about when it started, when you started taking medication and what sort of medication you are on. Basically, be honest with your dentist because this kind of information will help him or her decide what course of treatment is best for you.

One reason why you want to tell your dentist about the history of your diabetes is because they may accidentally prescribe you medicine that may interfere with your diabetes medication.

Because of your diabetes, your wounds tend to heal much more slowly and you’re more prone to infection. So, as far as dental treatments and recovery goes, be sure to follow your dentist’s recommendations to the letter.

Now, while going to the dentist is a significant step when it comes to having gum disease treated and keeping your diabetes under control, equally as important is the follow-up home care. If you don’t take proper care of your teeth, your diabetes will only get worse and this will only make it harder to control your diabetes.

Brush twice a day and floss once to prevent decay. If you’re suffering from dry mouth, ask our dentist or physician about other means of moistening your mouth. You should also rinse with fluoride mouthwash or gels to further prevent decay.

Minimizing The Risk for Gum Disease

Those with diabetes are more at risk for gum disease than those who are not, due to a combination of many factors. As a result, they have special needs.

Should you be suffering from diabetes, be sure to keep your glucose levels in check at all times and practice proper oral care at home. You should also visit the dentist regularly for checkups and cleaning, as well as make sure that your dentist is well-informed about the history of your disease.

By making sure that you do all those things, you suffering from diabetes should not be synonymous to you also suffering from gum disease.

If you’re have diabetes and would like more information on periodontal disease, contact Dr. Bartz at 708-430-4440 or visit our website at www.bartzandbartzdental.com to learn more.

Dr. Bartz proudly welcomes patients from Chicago, Orland Park, Burbank and Palos Hills.

Dentist Oak Lawn, IL | Root Planing and Scaling

Young woman at the dentist

Hearing you have periodontal (gum) disease, is never ideal. Many adults currently have some form of the disease. Periodontal diseases range from simple gum inflammation to serious disease that results in major damage to the soft tissue and bone that support the teeth. In the worst cases, teeth are lost. Whether your gum disease is stopped, slowed, or gets worse depends a great deal on how well you care for your teeth and gums daily.

Your mouth is full of bacteria. This bacteria, along with saliva and food particles, constantly form a sticky, colorless film or plaque on teeth. Brushing paired with regular flossing help get rid of plaque. Plaque that is not removed can harden and form tartar that brushing doesn’t clean. Only a professional cleaning by a dentist or dental hygienist can remove tartar.

Your dentist can removes the plaque through a deep-cleaning method called scaling and root planing. Scaling means scraping off the tartar from above and below the gum line. Root planing and scaling cleans between the gums and the teeth down to the roots.  In some cases a laser may be used to remove plaque and tartar. This procedure can result in less bleeding, swelling, and discomfort compared to traditional deep cleaning methods.

 

Why is it Done?

Root planing and scaling is done when gums have either started to pull away from the teeth or the roots of the teeth have hard mineral deposits (tartar) on them.

If you maintain good dental care after the procedure, the progression of gum disease should stop. And your gums will heal and become firm and pink again.

Risks:

Root planing and scaling can introduce harmful bacteria into the bloodstream. Gum tissue is also at risk of infection. You may need to take antibiotics before and after surgery if you have a condition that puts you at high risk for a severe infection or if infections are particularly dangerous for you.

Root planing and scaling is a simple procedure that can work very well to stop gum disease. Brush and floss regularly afterward. Proper oral hygiene is the key to avoiding dental pitfalls.

For more information on root planing and scaling contact Dr. Bartz at (708) 430-4440 or visit our website at  bartzandbartzdental.com.

Dr. Bartz also welcomes patients from Chicago, Orland Park, Burbank and Palos Hills.