The pink gums around your teeth can become darkened and develop a tendency to bleed. The main causes of this superficial inflammation are plaque and tartar. Failure to treat this problem in time can lead to receding gums and periodontitis, a more serious condition attacking the tissues that attach the teeth to the gums.
To prevent and cure gingivitis, always practice good oral hygiene and make sure to visit your dentist regularly (every six months) to have your teeth cleaned. The most important habits to adopt include flossing at least once a day and brushing after every meal and before going to bed to change the pH of your mouth (which increases during the night).
In addition to red, bleeding gums, you’ll also notice that your teeth are somewhat loose, you have bad breath (halitosis) and your gums have receded.
The problem comes on gradually at first with only occasional bleeding and no discomfort. However, if the infection isn’t detected and treated, you will eventually begin experiencing pain. By then, it’s often too late to reverse the progression of the disease. A full 80 percent of the population suffers from this type of infection.
The condition can be the result of poor dental hygiene, genetics, transmission through the saliva of one’s children or spouse, or smoking, which diminishes the body’s immune response.
Before performing a cleaning to eliminate the bacterial load, the practitioner will evaluate your oral hygiene methods. He or she will then use a probe to test your tissue response and take periodontal measurements. There will normally be a 2–3 mm space between the gum and the tooth. If this space is greater than 5 mm, it’s recommended to undergo a subgingival tartar removal treatment. Afterwards, you’ll need to visit Dr. Richard Landry’s clinic in Montreal every three months for regular maintenance until the space has diminished to less than four millimeters.
At the office of your dentist in Montreal, having a tooth pulled can be simple. If the teeth are visible and aren’t excessively damaged by cavities, the dentist can extract them easily and without complications. After applying a topical gel to numb the injection site, the practitioner will administer a local anesthetic.
Surgical extractions (oral surgery)
If a dentist can’t extract a tooth using traditional methods, an oral surgeon will have to extract it surgically. This may be necessary because the tooth is difficult to access, the roots may be divergent or curved (in the case of molars) or the tooth may be heavily damaged by cavities. After applying a deep local anesthetic, the practitioner will make an incision in your gum to expose the bone and extract the tooth.
Once the oral surgeon in Montreal has removed the tooth, the area will generally bleed for 3 to 4 minutes, although there may be some bleeding for up to 48 hours following the procedure. You can usually control it by applying cotton gauze or a tea bag (as the tannin in tea helps reduce bleeding) to the site of the extraction and biting down on it for approximately 30 minutes to exert pressure on the wound. We advise sleeping with an extra pillow for the next 48 hours.
There may be some mild temporary swelling and, with time, a slight change in the color of your face. You can reduce the swelling by applying ice wrapped in a wet cloth for 10 minutes at a time, every hour during the first 2 days following the extraction.
To help with the pain, you can take anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen (one tablet every 4 to 6 hours, not to exceed 3,200 mg per day). If the pain persists, you can add a pain reliever like acetaminophen (500 mg, 1 to 2 tablets every 4 to 6 hours, not to exceed 4 grams per day for a maximum of 1 week).
Risk of infection following oral surgery
If necessary, the practitioner may administer an antibiotic after performing the extraction.
Avoid spitting for the first 24 hours; otherwise, the blood clot can become dislodged from the bone cavity, making the area extremely sensitive. After this, you can rinse out your mouth three to four times a day with a glass of water with a pinch of salt.
You should be on the lookout for the following:
If you’re a smoker, you may face potential complications because smoking reduces the number of blood vessels, as well as the number of cells that can defend you against bacteria.
If you’re undergoing or have recently undergone chemotherapy or radiation treatments or if you’re taking medication for osteoporosis, you should avoid extractions.
What you should know about oral inflammation
For a long time now, we’ve known that bacteria in the mouth can cause heart valve problems, sometimes necessitating valve replacement surgery. We’ve recently discovered additional side effects resulting from the presence of these bacteria. Following an injury to the gums, the oral bacteria can enter your bloodstream. These are the most dangerous bacteria found in the body, which is why you need a tetanus shot after being bitten. The bacteria will then lead to inflammation of certain organs.
Other potential side effects include Alzheimer’s disease, pneumonia, premature labor in pregnant women and pancreatic problems making it difficult for diabetic patients to achieve accurate glucose readings. A study at the University of Montreal demonstrated that an oral bacterium led to chronic inflammation that subsequently developed into cancer. Long story short, the body doesn’t like inflammation, and at Dr. Landry’s clinic in Montreal, we’ll make sure there isn’t any in your gums.