Periodontal Disease Specialist

West End Dental

General Dentists & Cosmetic Dentists located in Downtown, DC and Foggy Bottom, DC, Washington, DC

About 64 million Americans have periodontal disease. Though common, without adequate treatment, periodontal disease can result in tooth loss and other more serious health problems. At West End Dental in Downtown Washington, DC, Lauren Izadi, DDS, Edward Kim, MS, DDS, and the team provide periodontal probings to diagnose disease. They also offer treatments, including scaling and root planing, and local antibiotic therapy. To schedule an appointment, book a consultation online, or call the office to speak with a member of the administrative staff today.

Periodontal Disease Q&A

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease refers to a group of conditions that cause inflammation of the gum tissue. Without prompt intervention, periodontal disease destroys your gums and jawbone, resulting in loose or missing teeth. 

Several factors contribute to periodontal disease, but the leading cause is poor oral hygiene. You might also experience periodontal disease if you use tobacco, eat junk foods, or drink alcohol excessively. 

What are the symptoms of periodontal disease?

The symptoms of periodontal disease vary depending on its severity. Signs to watch out for include:

  • Swollen or puffy gums
  • Bright red or purple gums
  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Bad breath
  • Loose teeth
  • Pain while chewing or biting
  • Spaces developing between your teeth

If you have periodontal disease, you might also notice that you have a receding gum line, or that your teeth that don’t fit together like they used to. 

How is periodontal disease diagnosed?

To diagnose periodontal disease, your West End Dental provider conducts a comprehensive oral exam and periodontal probing. During a periodontal probing, your provider uses a small handheld ruler to measure the size of the pockets around your teeth. Large pockets indicate an active infection.

Usually, visual observation is enough to make a diagnosis, but your provider might also take digital X-rays to see if there’s any damage to your jawbone.

How is periodontal disease treated?

Treatment for periodontal disease depends on the severity of your symptoms and your overall oral health. The team at West End Dental offers several types of treatment, including:

Scaling and root planing

Scaling and root planing is a quick outpatient procedure. Your provider carefully removes plaque and tartar from the surface of your teeth and beneath your gum line. Afterward, your tooth surfaces are smoothed, allowing your gums to heal and reattach to your teeth.

Local antibiotic therapy

If you have a severe case of periodontal disease, you might benefit from local antibiotic therapy. This involves your provider implanting small beads of antibiotic medication beneath your gums. The beads dissolve over time, releasing infection-fighting medications.

Ultimately, the goal of treatment is to prevent further infection and to preserve your oral health.

Don’t let periodontal disease negatively affect your quality of life. Schedule an appointment at West End Dental. Book a consultation online, or call the office to speak with a member of the administrative staff today.