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Periodontal Treatment

Restoring the health of your mouth

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What to Expect at Your Appointment as a New Patient

Schedule Your Appointment
  • A consultation is provided, and X-rays are done, if needed
  • Treatment and the post-operative recovery process are discussed; this includes diet limitations and possible bruising
  • A team member will set up an appointment and go over financing options or insurance with you

Patient Friendly Financing Options

Whether your dental care is for your family, a new smile for your next interview, braces for your future, or dentures to eat your favorite food, financing your dental care at Great Expressions Dental Centers is as easy as smiling.

Plans to Help You Pay

We accept cash, check, and credit cards. Plus, our Great Expressions Office payment plans (see office for details). If you don’t have insurance we also accept CareCredit and offer the Smile Protection Plan


When you finance with CareCredit, you get the dental treatment you need, with zero down or minimal up-front investment.



Great Expressions is In-Network with most providers, and participates with PPO and DHMO programs.



The Great Expressions Dental Plan offers dental discounts without deductibles or precertification limitations.

Frequently Asked Questions

Periodontal disease (commonly referred to as gum disease) is a bacterial infection of the gums and bone that, if not treated, can cause you to lose your teeth. For periodontal disease treatment, we have many dedicated periodontal doctors (or periodontists) who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of periodontal disease and other conditions. The most common periodontal services consist of scaling and root planing (“deep cleaning”), crown lengthening, and dental implants.

The health of your gums and surrounding bone or ligaments have become infected and need careful treatment or therapy. Medical research shows that the bacteria in your mouth can also travel through your bloodstream into other organs in the body. This bacterium has been found to increase the risk and severity of other health-related issues, such as:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease and stroke
  • Respiratory infections and diseases
  • Pre-term and low-birth-weight babies
  • Osteoporosis

The goal of periodontal therapy is to preserve your teeth by maintaining and improving your periodontal health, comfort, and function. Periodontal therapy from Great Expressions promotes healing and repairs damage resulting from infection, disease, and pathology.

The earliest form of the disease is gingivitis, where the bacteria irritate the gums and cause them to become inflamed and bleed. If gingivitis is not treated, it can advance to periodontal disease.

You’re not alone. The American Dental Association (ADA) states that in the U.S., nearly 75 percent of adults over the age of 35 have some form of gum disease.

There are many contributing factors to periodontal disease, such as:

  • Genetics
  • Changes in hormones, such as puberty or pregnancy
  • Poor nutrition
  • Medications
  • Other systemic diseases, such as diabetes or heart disease
  • Stress
  • Habits, such as tobacco or excessive alcohol use
  • Poor home care

Some common symptoms of periodontal disease are:

  • Red, puffy, or bleeding gums
  • Foul odor or taste in your mouth
  • Loose or shifting teeth
  • Gums that recede, or shrink, making the teeth appear longer

Healthy gums do not bleed, even during the dental hygiene appointment. Loaded with bacteria, the plaque and calculus can cause an infection where the first sign is bleeding gums. Periodontal disease doesn’t typically hurt until it is in the advanced stages. Bleeding is the body’s way of indicating that something is wrong.

We do a comprehensive exam. This includes periodontal charting, where we take measurements and record the spaces or “pockets” between your teeth and gums. In healthy gums, the pockets measure 1 to 3 millimeters in depth, and there is no bleeding. Deeper measurements or pockets that bleed indicate a problem. We look for bone loss on your X-rays, and we note any loose and missing teeth, or areas where your gums have receded. Bone is the stable support for your teeth. The infection causes the bone to shrink, causing the teeth to become loose.

If your disease is in the early or moderate phase, we will treat it with non-surgical periodontal therapy. This therapy includes a procedure called scaling and root planing, or “SRP.” Scaling is the removal of plaque and calculus with a scaler. Root planing is therapeutic (relating to the treatment of disease). It is a more involved procedure and consists of removing the bacteria and toxins from the pockets around your teeth.

These procedures may take more than one visit, depending on the extent of your disease. In many cases, we use anesthetic, so that you are comfortable during the procedure. We will also flush the debris out of the pockets with medication and apply a local antibiotic to help you fight infection.

Once your initial phase of treatment is completed, you will need to return more frequently for periodontal maintenance. At these appointments, we closely monitor and reevaluate your condition, and remove the destructive bacteria at the bottom of the pocket where normal brushing and flossing at home do not reach. This may include additional “site-specific” SRP and an antibiotic where indicated.

Since periodontal disease is episodic, your course of treatment may be modified in order to keep your disease under control. The modifications largely depend on your response from therapy and home care. If we are unable to control it in our office, we will refer you to a periodontal doctor who will evaluate your condition for possible surgery.

Prophylaxis, or your “regular cleaning,” is done to prevent disease. It is for healthy gums only. Once you have periodontal disease, more aggressive treatment is needed in order to get it under control.

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection. It can spread throughout your mouth and into other parts of your body, compromising your overall health. If left untreated, you could lose your teeth. Gums generally respond best when treated in the early phase of the disease, so it is important that you get treatment as soon as possible.

Physicians and surgeons commonly request that a patient have “dental clearance” prior to any type of surgery. This is due to the possibility that the bacteria can travel throughout the body and cause an infection at the site of the surgery.

After treatment, some bacteria do remain. These bacteria reproduce and can reach destructive levels again in as few as 90 days. It is very important to return for your regularly scheduled periodontal maintenance appointments, so we can monitor your disease.

Getting it under control is the first step in an attempt to prevent its progression. Unfortunately, there is no cure for periodontal disease. As always, talk with your dental care professionals if you have any questions or concerns.

What you do at home is extremely important. Up to 70 percent of your success in maintaining your disease depends on your home care. Many times, after periodontal therapy, the gums will begin to heal. In order to maintain this, your habits will need to change at home. This may include more frequent flossing, using a power toothbrush, and other recommended oral health care aide products to help remove the plaque more effectively.

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