There’s nothing about gum disease worth smiling about. Also called “periodontal disease,” these oral problems actually cover a small range of conditions. In its less severe form it’s called “gingivitis,” where the gums become swollen and sensitive. They may also turn a crimson red and bleed from time to time. “Periodontitis” is the more severe form of gum disease. It can lead to the tooth moving out of the gum itself and sometimes falling out completely. What’s more, all forms of gum disease come with the risk of dreaded halitosis.
Gum disease is of course preventable, but not entirely.
Bacteria is always in our mouths, and when combined with mucus, forms plaque, which itself hardens into tartar. Now, you might think that an active oral hygiene program will protect you against any kind of gum disease. Unfortunately, even the most rigorous daily brushing and flossing isn’t a 100% guaranteed way to prevent gingivitis or periodontitis. Gum disease can be caused by certain illnesses or medications, even hormonal changes.
When the average person thinks about surgical gum procedures, it’s likely they wince in anticipation of pain. The gums are a very sensitive part of the body, especially the part covering the tooth. The thought of a metal pointy object, or curette, scraping across that surface may dissuade some from seeking the procedures.
Modern technology, as it so often does, steps in with a much-needed upgrade: Laser curettage. Like an actual metal curette, laser curettage removes bacteria from gum tissue which line the pockets of your teeth. As it is a laser —which literally means “light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation” — you might say, it beams and blasts the bacteria right out of there.
The most sophisticated laser curettage uses wavelength technology to get at the diseased tissue while leaving the healthy part of your gums unaffected. Lasers can also have the added bonus of even helping the healing process of the surrounding gum tissue and bone.
So what to expect when it comes to non-surgical gum treatment done with lasers? The procedure itself varies in time but most clinics who offer these services, like this Keswick Dentist in Ontario, will book at least one hour for the appointment. During the procedure, you’ll likely be given a local anaesthetic, so it’s practically painless.
After the procedure is done, your gums may still feel sensitive and swollen for up to a week, but less so if the surgery had been invasive. You might be prescribed some strong painkillers, but otherwise, there’s no reason to experience any negative effects in your day to day.
Except maybe one: with your eating habits. Regardless if your gum surgery was with a blade or a beam, certain foods are definitely to be avoided. Most obviously are crunchy foods. Likewise, you should avoid eating anything too spicy. So if Indian or Mexican is your fave dish, better go out for a feast before getting non-surgical laser gum surgery.