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Protect Your Smile and Your Overall Health with Periodontal Treatment

Periodontal disease is a serious condition that affects your gums and other tissues that make up the foundation of your smile. The effective periodontal treatment provided at Legacy Dental Group in Birmingham, MI, can help protect and maintain your oral health before the damage progresses and requires costlier, more complex treatment.

Research has found the health of your gums is linked to overall health, meaning periodontal treatment can have far-reaching benefits. Drs. Jeffrey Grabiel, John Mills, and Raymond J. Kim can help you and your family experience the many benefits of outstanding periodontal care.

Periodontal Disease

Also known as gum disease, periodontal disease can cause irreversible damage if left untreated. It is caused by a degenerative bacterium that harms the gums and can affect the roots of your teeth as well as the supporting bone tissue. Although early stages of the disease can be reversed, advanced stages are chronic, but can be managed with the guidance of your dentist.

periodontal disease
Periodontal disease presents a serious threat to your oral health that can eventually lead to tooth loss and other issues.

There are two primary stages of gum disease. The earliest and mildest form is called gingivitis and is characterized by swelling of the gums and bleeding during brushing or flossing. At this stage, the disease is relatively easy to treat.

At Legacy Dental Group, we incorporate advanced diagnostic tools for evaluating your risk of periodontal disease.

The more advanced stage of gum disease is periodontitis, which is characterized by the development of pockets along the gum line. In advanced cases, periodontal disease leads to tooth and bone loss.

Warning Signs

There are a variety of symptoms that can indicate gum disease. Signs to watch for include:

  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
  • Swollen or tender gums
  • Gums that appear to be receding
  • Chronic bad breath
  • Increased space between teeth
  • Changes in your bite
  • Sores in your mouth

Contact our office right away if you experience any of these symptoms, as they may be signs of a serious oral health issue. It is important to understand that some sufferers exhibit no signs of gum disease, which is why it is important to attend check-ups and exams every six months.


Although the mouth normally contains many types of bacteria, when an overgrowth or imbalance occurs, gum disease can develop. Other contributing causes include:

  • Smoking and tobacco use
  • Pregnancy
  • Use of oral contraceptives
  • Anti-depressants
  • Certain heart medicines
  • Grinding your teeth
  • Diabetes
  • Poor nutrition

There is also a genetic predisposition for gum disease that affects nearly 30 percent of the population. This means that even patients who practice diligent oral care can be susceptible to the condition.

Periodontal Disease and General Health 

In addition to the harm gum disease can cause to your smile, evidence shows that there are links between periodontal disease and other systemic health problems such as heart disease and diabetes. At Legacy Dental Group, we believe in providing treatment that benefits your smile and your overall health.

Treating Periodontal Disease

At Legacy Dental Group, we incorporate advanced diagnostic tools for evaluating your risk of periodontal disease. Oral DNA and bacterial testing are powerful tools for the early detection of gum disease.

Non-Surgical Treatment

The treatment plan established by your dentist will depend on how far the disease has progressed. In early stages, gingivitis can usually be reversed using a prescription oral mouthwash. Scaling and root planing, also known as a deep cleaning, can also treat early stages of the disease. This method cleans and smooths the surfaces of the dental roots to remove plaque and tartar build-up below the gum line. After this treatment, your dentist will apply Arestin®, an antibiotic that remains active for several months after application to help prevent bacteria from returning.

Surgical Treatment

In advanced stages, gum surgery is often the only viable treatment, especially if the tissue around your teeth has receded substantially. The four types of gum surgery are pocket reduction procedures, regenerative procedures, crown lengthening, and soft tissue grafts.

Experience the Benefits of a Healthy Smile

At Legacy Dental Group, we employ a variety of methods to protect your smile, from risk assessments to general maintenance. During routine exams, we can monitor your family's periodontal health and provide treatment as needed. Contact us online or call (248) 644-3131 to schedule an appointment with a member of our highly trained and friendly team.

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"This is absolutely the best dentist in the Birmingham area. You won’t believe the transformation of your smile."

-Christophe D.
Satisfied Patient