If you or a family member are one of those people who keeps putting off regular dental visits because of anxiety or unusual tooth sensitivity, you really owe it to yourself to look into sedation dentistry in Raleigh, NC. Certain people (some estimates say 30% of the population) are pre-disposed to periodontal disease. What does that mean? For starters, periodontal disease is the number one cause of tooth loss in adult patients. (Many of our patients assume it is cavities!) Unfortunately, periodontal disease can become quite advanced before people ever realize a problem exists. Those who are predisposed to the having the disease are six times more likely to experience gum disease than other people. That means that for some people regular brushing and flossing is not enough.
More and more studies continue to link other health issues (diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis, etc.) to periodontal disease. In some cases, the health issue predisposes you to gum disease. In other cases, gum disease is suspected as being a precipitating cause of the health issue. We are still trying to better understand the full consequences of bacteria and byproducts that develop around inflamed gums on other body parts and systems. In light of these risks, sedation dentistry just makes good sense for those who are putting off regular cleanings and check-ups. Because of the seriousness of gum disease, there is much research going on to assist with risk assessment and detection. This includes research to determine whether genetic testing can identify those at high risk and who really need more frequent dental visits to head off the serious problems. Other types of tests, which would let us easily test fluid in the mouth (not saliva, but fluid that accumulates in crevices between gums and teeth) and determine how advanced gum disease truly is, are also being explored. Even a skilled dentist’s eye may not detect just how advanced the disease has actually become.
Until some of these tests become proven and readily available, periodontal disease will remain, for the most part, a silent predator for those who don’t regularly visit a dentist. Ask us about sedation dentistry if you’re not comfortable with regular dental visits. Especially ask us if you have factors that do predispose you to gum disease (diabetes, smoking, women with hormonal fluctuations, family history of gum disease, receding gums) or indicators that it is already present (bleeding around the gums, a loose tooth). If you already know that you have periodontal disease but can’t stand undergoing periodontal treatments, you should let us explain sedation dentistry to you, as well as the risks you’re exposing yourself to if you don’t get the regular treatments you need. We not only provide sedation dentistry, our comprehensive dentistry services also include periodontal treatments. If you are one of those who has to contend with periodontal disease, this allows you the convenience of scheduling regular checkups and periodontal treatment in the same office visit.