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Signs You Need Pocket Reduction Surgery

Posted on 6/25/2017 by Doctor Southard
A patient suffering from gum disease.
Gum disease starts quietly, and can easily go undetected in its earliest stages. The signs - red, swollen gums that may bleed with brushing and flossing - are often unseen or mistaken for rough brushing.

As it progresses, it becomes more serious, bacteria falling below the gum line to attack the teeth and bone. If it progresses too far, you may be in need of pocket reduction surgery.

What is Pocket Reduction Surgery?

Pocket reduction surgery, sometimes referred to as gum flap surgery, is a periodontal procedure that involves cutting the gums and pulling back the tissue access deeper areas of plaque and tartar.

The surface of your teeth, their roots, and possibly even bone, are cleaned, disinfected and smoothed (which helps to limit hiding places for any potential new bacteria). The gums are then arranged so that they fit snugly against your teeth, reducing the space between the two and allowing your gums to heal.

Signs of Gum Disease

The earliest signs of gum disease are gums that are red and swollen, and that may bleed when you brush or floss. If ignored, giving way for gum disease to progress, new symptoms begin to appear. You may notice gum recession and persistent bad breath. Eventually, gum disease can lead to tooth loss.

When You Need Pocket Reduction Surgery

As your gums recede, pockets form, which creates space for bacteria and food particles to fall below. Without treatment, these pockets continue to grow deeper. One of the first treatments for more serious stages of gum disease is scaling and root planing.

This non-surgical procedure involves scraping plaque and tartar from the surface of your teeth and the roots, cleaning them and disinfecting the spaces, which helps your gums to heal. After your first treatment, you return for a follow-up, during which your dentist measures the depth of your periodontal pockets.

If no change has been made, you may be recommended for periodontal maintenance, or periodic deep cleanings. However, if your pockets measure deeper than 5 mm, it becomes very difficult for a periodontist to successfully clean your teeth, which means you will most likely require pocket reduction surgery.

If you notice any signs of gum disease, don't wait. Contact our office today!
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Steven Southard DDS, MS
Midwest Periodontics
1006 W St Maartens Dr, Suite A
St Joseph, MO 64506

(816) 207-4005

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Midwest Periodontics, 1006 W St Maartens Dr, St Joseph, MO, 64506-2967 - Key Phrases: Periodontist St Joseph MO | Dental Implants St Joseph MO | (816) 207-4005 | | 12/11/2017