Gum disease starts quietly and invisibly, but can lead to very serious and noticeable consequences if left untreated. Excess plaque and bacteria around the gum line cause irritation. This irritation can result in the gums pulling away from the teeth. When the gums pull away, they leave pockets between the gums and teeth which become home to more bacteria, leading to more irritation and infection. Gum pockets can get larger, resulting in more severe irritation and infection that can lead to bone loss around the tooth and eventually loss of the tooth itself.
The good news is that we can intervene at any of these stages to provide the periodontal care which will help restore your gums and teeth to health. One of the procedures we use is osseous surgery. “Osseous” refers to bone tissue, and this treatment works to restore the bone structures supporting your teeth if gum disease has damaged or weakened them.
Healthy gums fit tightly around the teeth, keeping bacteria from affecting the roots and bone. Small pockets can be cleaned in our San Mateo, CA office and plaque removed from tooth areas normally hidden by the gums. But if the pocket has become too deep, normal home and even office cleanings cannot fully treat the gum and bone tissue involved. The bone which holds our teeth securely in our jaws can become pitted and irregular. Osseous surgery can be used not only to clean the area, but to restore gum and bone tissue to health.
After an anesthetic numbs the area, your periodontist will fold back the gum tissue around the affected tooth and bone. The gums will be carefully cleaned. If the bone has become pitted, this offers bacteria another place to grow and cause damage to your tooth structures. We will smooth damaged areas of the bone to their natural shape, where your gum tissue will find it easier to attach to the healthy bone. When we have finished, the gums will be secured around the tooth. After surgery, the pockets will be reduced in size, and you should be able to return to a normal routine of regular gum care.
We know the idea of oral surgery can be intimidating, so talk Dr. Pope, Dr. Pickering, and Dr. Lewis us about osseous surgery if it has been recommended for you. We are experienced in preventing gum disease from causing more damage, and in gently restoring your gums and bone to health for your most attractive and lasting smile.