Periodontal Health in Darwin

Older couple sitting close smiling I Periodontal health casuarina NT

Many people put off visiting the dentist because they aren’t experiencing any dental issues. They may reason that since they brush and floss at home, seeing their Darwin dentist twice each year for check-ups and cleans is a ‘waste of money.’

The problem with that attitude, though, is that many dental issues present with minimal or no symptoms, so people are unaware. By the time people realise there is a problem, they often need much more extensive dental work than they would have needed had they been going to the dentist regularly. For example, a tiny cavity that would have been spotted at a routine dental exam and filled with a small filling grows over time into a tooth infection that now requires a root canal.

There are other issues to consider, as well. Thanks to ongoing research, we know a lot more today about periodontal health and its link to overall health. Gum disease has been connected to serious health issues, including heart disease, stroke and certain kinds of cancers.

Periodontal health, sometimes known as gum disease or jawbone disease, does not cause much pain in the early stages, so most people are unaware they have gum disease. This is why preventive dental appointments at your Darwin dentist are so necessary—both for prevention and early detection.

If it’s been a while since your last check-up and clean, we welcome your call to arrange an appointment. Find out about your periodontal health at our Casuarina dental clinic.

How does oral health contribute to overall health?

Bacteria that cause periodontal disease have also been linked with other health conditions such as heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. This is known today as the oral-systemic link.

The team at Casuarina Square Dental Care can help you protect your overall health by providing regular appointments every six months. These visits allow our team to remove any bacteria building up below the surface and restore healthier gum conditions. This reduces the risks of periodontal disease and tooth loss over time for our Darwin patients.

How often should I go to the dentist?

The Australian Dental Association recommends that people visit their dentist every six months for routine dental exams and teeth cleaning. These preventive dental appointments are crucial for discovering dental issues while they are still in their earliest stages. Treating dental issues earlier rather than later almost always means that treatment is less invasive—and less expensive.

Visiting your Darwin, NT top dentist twice each year will help ensure your gums stay healthy. Since most gum disease starts without any symptoms at all, you can’t know if your gums are healthy unless you go to the dentist. Left untreated, gum disease can lead to tooth loss.

What happens during a routine preventive care dental appointment?

When you come in for your six-month cleaning and exam, our Casuarina dental team will screen you for early signs of gum disease and other issues such as oral cancer and tooth decay.

Your dentist can actually detect these conditions early, which is often key to successful treatment. By coming in every six months, you may also be able to avoid many painful and expensive dental conditions altogether.

How do I know if my gums are healthy?

The only way to know for sure if your gums are healthy is to visit your dentist. Your Darwin, NT dentist will conduct a thorough examination, checking periodontal health as well as signs of other dental issues.

What are the signs and symptoms of gum disease?

In its early stages, gum disease usually doesn’t have any symptoms, which is why it’s so important to visit your Darwin, NT dentist regularly. By the time you start seeing the signs that there could be a problem, the disease might be well advanced already.

  • Bleeding gums after brushing and flossing is one of the first signs.
  • Gums often look puffy, red and swollen.
  • You might have bad breath that you cannot get rid of—despite frequent brushing.
  • Your teeth might start to look longer as the gums pull away from them.
  • Pockets of pus can form between the teeth and the gumline.

What is gingivitis?

When plaque builds up below the gum line and isn’t removed in routine dental cleans, there is a strong likelihood of an infection developing. Gums may start to bleed when you brush and floss—or there might be no symptoms whatsoever. This is the early stage of gum disease, and it is referred to as ‘gingivitis.’

man smiling in the dental chair | periodontal health casuraina

When symptoms do show up in patients, they usually include:

  • Blood in the sink after brushing or flossing
  • Gums that are swollen and red
  • Bad breath that persists despite brushing and using mouthwash

Over time, the bone and tissue that support your teeth can start to shrink and cause teeth to become loose. This infection below the gumline does not cause pain in the early stages, although it does have long-term effects when left untreated.

What is periodontitis?

Periodontal disease, also known as periodontitis, progresses slowly. It is usually painless and can take several years before it affects your teeth or results in tooth loss. Periodontitis is an advanced stage of gum disease, and with it, the teeth might begin to feel loose as the bone around the teeth deteriorates because of bacterial infection.

There is no cure for gum disease at this point; the best that can be expected is to manage the condition. Your dentist will probably recommend a deep cleaning that reaches below the gumline to reduce the amount of infection that is present. Prescription antibiotic treatment or surgery might also be recommended.

How is gum disease treated?

If you have gum disease, your Darwin dentist will work with you to develop a treatment programme that will include deep cleaning. We may recommend a more frequent teeth cleaning schedule that twice a year. In some cases, further treatment might be needed beyond a deep cleaning and might include prescription antibiotics or gum surgery.

What if I don’t treat my gum disease?

Unfortunately, there is no permanent ‘cure’ for periodontal disease; however, with a lifelong commitment to regular dental visits and a diligent home care routine, a dentist can help keep the condition under control.

If you don’t treat your gum disease, you will eventually lose your teeth as the bone around the teeth begins to dissolve. Gum disease is one of the main causes of tooth loss among adults.

It’s crucial to check your periodontal health by calling our Casuarina dental clinic and arranging an appointment. We recommend that you come in every six months for check-ups and cleans.

What should my next step be?

We recommend that you not put off routine dental care, and we invite you to contact Casuarina Square Dental Care to arrange an appointment for a check-up and clean.