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4.9/5

4.9 Stars | 452 Reviews

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Gum Disease

Our team of dental professionals is committed to providing you with the highest quality care to ensure your dental health.

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What is Gum Disease?

What is Gum Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease or periodontitis, is a condition in which bacterial growth in your mouth causes your gums to pull away from your teeth, creating periodontal pockets that collect debris and become infected. The infection then damages the bone that supports your teeth.

The early stage of gum disease, called gingivitis, often appears as bad breath and swollen gums that bleed when you brush or floss. At this stage, there might be little to no discomfort and you may not even realize anything is wrong.

If ignored, gingivitis progresses into more dangerous stages of gum disease that require advanced care from a dentist. Fortunately, gingivitis can easily be controlled.

What is Gum Disease?

Mild gingivitis can typically be reversed with good oral hygiene and regular checkups with your dentist.

But if ignored, gum disease can cause widespread damage to your mouth, including jawbone deterioration and tooth loss.

If left untreated, gum disease can even lead to other serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Therefore, seeking regular periodontal care is crucial for not only maintaining a healthy smile but also overall wellness.

If you’re in the Harrisonburg, VA, area, Smiles for Life Dental Care can provide you with treatment to improve the health of your gums.

Gum Disease Treatment

Knowing the Symptoms of Periodontal Disease

You may not notice the symptoms of gum disease even as it progresses into the later stages. The signs can be subtle, and can occur in places that are hard for you to detect. This is why it’s so important to schedule regular checkups at a dental office. Though you may not notice any symptoms, they often include:

Known Symptoms Include:

We Can Treat Your Gum Disease

Once plaque hardens into tartar and spreads below the gumline, your will need professional attention to remove it from your teeth. If you have developed periodontitis, our dentists can provide you with treatment.

We can also provide you with preventive care in the form of regular checkup. By testing, we look for hidden oral health concerns, genetic markers associated with periodontitis, and even oral cancer. These dental screenings allow our dentists to identify signs of gingivitis and other health concerns and control them before they become a bigger issue.

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Treatment Options for Gum Disease

Are you struggling with gum disease? Don’t fret there are a variety of effective treatment options that can help restore your smile to its former glory!

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Antibiotics

When taken during the earliest stages of periodontitis, antibiotics can sometimes be enough to resolve gum disease and restore your oral health. If necessary, an antibiotic can also be combined with other treatments performed by your hygienist. Antibiotics can either be taken in pill form or placed directly on the periodontal pockets as a gel.

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Antibacterial Irrigation

During scaling and root planing we use an antibacterial rinse to flush out harmful bacteria in periodontal pockets. This is a very safe and effective way to remove bacteria and toxins from beneath your gumline. You may be given this antibacterial rinse in your Waterpik at home during your periodontal treatment.

Scaling & Root Planing

Scaling and Root Planing

During a scaling and root planing procedure, your gums will be numbed with an anesthetic before your dentist uses a scaling device to gently remove plaque, tartar, and bacteria along the gumline and surface of the tooth. After scaling, the rough areas along the tooth roots are smoothed to prevent bacteria growth and to help loosened gums reattach to the teeth.

What Can Lead to Periodontal Disease?

Plaque buildup from poor oral hygiene habits is typically the cause of periodontal disease. However, other factors can contribute to the development of periodontal disease, including:

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Hormonal Changes

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Poor Home Care

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Certain Medications

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Certain Illnesses

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Smoking or Chewing Tobacco

47.2%

of adults aged 30 years and older have some form of periodontal disease.
-According to the CDC

The Long-Term Dangers of Periodontal Disease

When bacteria builds up in periodontal pockets, it can make its way into your bloodstream and affect parts of your body other than your mouth. This can lead to dangerous long-term disorders. Aside from tooth and bone loss, you may experience:

Cardiovascular disease

Pneumonia

Diabetes

Rheumatoid arthritis

Alzheimer’s disease

Stroke

Rheumatoid arthritis

Prevent Gingivitis Before It Starts

With proper oral hygiene, You can prevent the development of gum disease when you practice a good oral hygiene routine. During the early stages of disease, gingivitis can usually be prevented from progressing into more serious cases of periodontitis. Simply minimizing plaque buildup can contribute to good overall oral health.

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Brushing Twice per Day

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Antibacterial Mouthwash

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Flossing Once per Day

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Limiting Sugar Intake

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Scheduling Regular Dental Checkups

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Avoiding Nicotine Products

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Meet The Team

Experience dental care backed by expert and compassionate dentists. Trust in the skill and empathy of our dental professionals.

Our Smiles for Life Patients Know

That They Can Rely On Us
Bonnie Alioto
5/5

Cathy was very informative about the different procedures and how they would be done. They will check with my insurance and we would discuss cost after my next appointment.

Ramona Lantz
5/5

I underwent 4 hours of heavy dental work under medicated sedation due to my dental anxiety plus 2 months ago I also did the same treatment and both times went extremely well. The Drs were nice and explained everything so my anxiety would stay in check. I’ve been a patient at Smiles for Life for over 6 years and also took my mother who suffers from advanced Parkinson’s to them for full dentures and they were fabulous 💙.

Marque Blubaugh
5/5

Listens to every concern and is caring, professional, compassionate, and understanding of every concern or situation that you have. Evaluating the entire oral structure and creating a plan and long term plan to preserve dental and overall health and peace of mind. Up to date procedures and equipment to review the entire structure and provide options to restore, preserve and have a healthy life and proper ability to eat and chew properly and to be healthy and digest a healthy diet. And to preserve teeth and avoid infections in the mouth and body . An investment, not a contined expense, which you use every day for the rest of your life. Smiles for life, and where you get life to smile.

Graham Simmerman
5/5

Cathy is delightful and skilled hygienist that I’ve counted on for nearly 20 years. Wouldn’t still be traveling nearly an hour from my new home to this dentist office if I didn’t have full confidence in Cathy.

Sue Gibson
5/5

I've always received the best care at Smiles for Life Dental Care. Faith was excellent and Dr. Macintyre is caring and a true perfectionist! I highly recommend to family and friends!

Corinne Shire
5/5

I met with Becky today to discuss implants. Her knowledge is amazing and she explained things thoroughly. My husband was in the waiting room and noticed how nice the staff was to patients coming in for treatments.

George Brinkley
5/5

Smiles For Life is the best place ever Everyone is so polite and they make you feel so comfortable and not tensed up being in a dentist chair The dental hygienist Cathy is the greatest ever She does an incredible and awesome job Thanks for all you have done for me

Terry Eck
5/5

When I embarked on my journey to find the right dental implant service, I initially gravitated towards the two prominent national brands in the field. However, my search took an unexpected and incredibly satisfying turn when I decided to explore the offerings of a local implant provider. Little did I know that this local gem would redefine my expectations of what a top-notch implant service should be like. Here's why my experience with them was nothing short of extraordinary: Meticulous Charting of Teeth and Gums: ★★★★★ One of the first things that set this local provider apart from the national giants was their unwavering commitment to precision and detail. While the big names seemed more focused on the implant procedure itself, this local gem took the time to meticulously chart the condition of my teeth and gums. This attention to detail ensured that my implant procedure was tailored to my specific needs and challenges. It was clear that they understood the importance of a solid foundation for the success of the implants. Infection Prevention Education: ★★★★★ Implant surgery is not without its risks, and one of the key concerns is the possibility of infection. What truly impressed me was the depth of information and guidance this local provider offered regarding infection prevention. They didn't just gloss over this critical aspect; they took the time to discuss the infection possibilities associated with dental implants and, more importantly, outlined a comprehensive plan to combat and mitigate such conditions. Their proactive approach to ensuring patient safety was truly reassuring. First-Year Implant Supervision: ★★★★★ Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of my experience with this local implant provider was their commitment to the long-term success of my dental implants. While the national brands seemed content with the implant procedure itself, this local provider went above and beyond by offering required supervision for the first year following the implant surgery. This level of aftercare and ongoing support was simply unparalleled and gave me peace of mind knowing that my oral health was in capable hands. In conclusion, my exploration journey for dental implants took an unexpected turn when I discovered this exceptional local implant provider. Their dedication to detail, infection prevention, and post-surgery care were nothing short of outstanding. They not only surpassed the standards set by the national brands but also redefined my expectations of what a truly exceptional implant service should encompass. If you're in search of dental implants and want an experience that goes above and beyond, I wholeheartedly recommend giving this local gem a visit. They've certainly earned my trust and gratitude.

Smile Like Never Before with a Set of Dental Implants

The perfect time is now, to take control of your smile and freshen up your look! With a set of dental implants, you can upgrade your smile like never before. Claim the confidence you deserve today with a lasting dental solution that will make you grin from ear to ear!
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What our customers say

Bonnie Alioto
5/5

Cathy was very informative about the different procedures and how they would be done. They will check with my insurance and we would discuss cost after my next appointment.

Ramona Lantz
5/5

I underwent 4 hours of heavy dental work under medicated sedation due to my dental anxiety plus 2 months ago I also did the same treatment and both times went extremely well. The Drs were nice and explained everything so my anxiety would stay in check. I’ve been a patient at Smiles for Life for over 6 years and also took my mother who suffers from advanced Parkinson’s to them for full dentures and they were fabulous 💙.

Marque Blubaugh
5/5

Listens to every concern and is caring, professional, compassionate, and understanding of every concern or situation that you have. Evaluating the entire oral structure and creating a plan and long term plan to preserve dental and overall health and peace of mind. Up to date procedures and equipment to review the entire structure and provide options to restore, preserve and have a healthy life and proper ability to eat and chew properly and to be healthy and digest a healthy diet. And to preserve teeth and avoid infections in the mouth and body . An investment, not a contined expense, which you use every day for the rest of your life. Smiles for life, and where you get life to smile.

Graham Simmerman
5/5

Cathy is delightful and skilled hygienist that I’ve counted on for nearly 20 years. Wouldn’t still be traveling nearly an hour from my new home to this dentist office if I didn’t have full confidence in Cathy.

Sue Gibson
5/5

I've always received the best care at Smiles for Life Dental Care. Faith was excellent and Dr. Macintyre is caring and a true perfectionist! I highly recommend to family and friends!

Corinne Shire
5/5

I met with Becky today to discuss implants. Her knowledge is amazing and she explained things thoroughly. My husband was in the waiting room and noticed how nice the staff was to patients coming in for treatments.