Treating gum disease

What is Gum Disease?

Gum Disease affects the gums and bone supporting your teeth.

It begins with plaque, a soft, sticky substance mostly made up of bacteria, which feeds on sugar from food and drink. Tartar, formed by hardened plaque, makes it harder to be removed.

Plaque build-up can make gums sore and infected and they will probably bleed when you brush your teeth.

The gum will then start to become detached from the tooth, forming ‘pockets’ in which plaque can gather while bone, supporting the tooth will slowly be lost. Because this process is usually painless, it can become very bad without you noticing. If left unchecked, gum disease will lead to loss of teeth.

What is Root planing/ debridement?

Root planing is a way of helping to halt gum disease. It involves deep scaling, to clean parts of the teeth below the gumline.

Dental Hygienist

The dental hygienist is specifically trained in the prevention and treatment of gum disease along with dental health education. They can also take X rays to record and monitor gum disease. After a tooth has been root planed, the pocket should shrink, making the gum sit closer to the tooth. You then need to be especially careful about cleaning the teeth above the gumline. Root planing / debridement takes longer than a normal scale and polish, and may require a local anaesthetic. Your mouth will be treated in sections, at more than one visit.

Points to remember:

Root planning/debridement can help stop gum disease becoming worse and prevent tooth loss.

Regular hygiene visits are necessary for a healthy dentition.

Contact Tobin Dental Ltd for a routine and daily emergency appointments @ Station Road, Castlebar, Co. Mayo. Ph: 094 9025705 / 9023958 or visit



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