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Specialist Dentistry

Specialist Dentistry at Treetops Dental Surgery includes the fields of endodontics and periodontics. Endodontics focuses on diagnosing and treating problems related to the innermost part of the tooth, including the pulp and root canal system. Periodontics deals with the diagnosis and treatment of diseases that affect the gums and other supporting structures of the teeth.

Treetops Dental Surgery has experienced specialists in both these fields who are equipped to provide the best possible care to their patients.

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Periodontics

Periodontal disease (periodontitis) is caused by dental plaque (bacteria) in your mouth, which irritate the gums. The effect of this irritation and inflammation can cause destruction of the attachment between the gums and your teeth. This results in the development of pockets between the teeth and gums, and once plaque accumulates in these pockets, the disease progresses. This causes destruction of the structures holding the teeth in the jaw, namely the bone, resulting in loose teeth and eventually tooth loss. The disease is usually slowly progressing, but it can go through periods of rapid destruction and in more rare cases it can be very aggressive. 

 

Now you have this condition you will need to make changes to your lifestyle and daily routines if you wish to keep your teeth for longer. You will also require continuing close care and support to prevent it from getting worse and to detect any relapse. 

 

What is dental plaque?

Dental plaque is the name given to a film of bacteria which is constantly forming on the teeth. Plaque causes tooth decay and periodontal diseases. It is a soft colourless substance that is difficult to see until the coating becomes thickened. It collects on the surfaces of the teeth next to the gums and between the teeth. With time plaque becomes hardened and this is known as calculus (tartar). 

Risk factors for Periodontal Disease

The success of periodontal treatment is multifactorial, but your role is central and crucial in maintaining low plaque levels in the mouth, as well as managing other risk factors. It is for this reason that periodontal treatment does not guarantee stabilising the condition. The two main recognised risk factors for periodontal disease are smoking and poorly or uncontrolled diabetes. Other risk indicators include stress, cardiovascular disease, pregnancy, kidney disease, arthritis, obesity and some medications. 

Can Periodontal Disease be treated?

Yes, periodontal disease can be successfully treated, especially if caught early. Management is aimed at improving daily plaque removal techniques and by having an intensive course of treatment. Achieving and maintaining good plaque removal and attending regular appointments are a lifelong commitment. Treatment also involves stopping smoking (if appropriate) and leading a healthy lifestyle. If the periodontal treatment is not supported with adequate levels of oral hygiene at home, it will not be successful, and the result will be continuing destruction of the bone supporting your teeth leading to increasing tooth mobility and eventual tooth loss. 

What is Periodontal treatment?

Periodontal treatment aims to remove the plaque, which is the principal cause of periodontal disease, and calculus, which is an accumulation of hard deposits, on the tooth above and/or below the gum margin. Plaque residing in deep pockets are inaccessible to daily home cleaning and therefore ‘deep cleaning’ is required professionally, in an attempt to reduce these deep pockets. The treatment involves using powered and/or hand instruments to remove this plaque and calculus under local anaesthetic. This helps to reduce discomfort and allow thorough cleaning to be performed. Medications or a special mouth rinse to help control the growth of bacteria may also be part of the treatment. 

Endodontics - what is an endodontist?

An endodontist is a dentist who specialises in saving teeth. They are experts in diagnosing and treating dental pain and infection, as well as managing dental trauma. 

 

Endodontics is the branch of dentistry concerned with the ‘dental pulp’ and tissues surrounding the roots of a tooth. The dental pulp is a living soft tissue contained within the tooth containing nerves and blood vessels. The term “Endo” is the Greek word for “inside” and “odont” is Greek for “tooth.” 

What is endodontic treatment? 

Endodontic treatment encompasses a variety of procedures that aim to treat or prevent diseases to the soft dental pulp tissue inside the tooth. Root canal treatment is the most common type of endodontic treatment. 

What is a Root Canal treatment? 

Root canal treatment is designed to eliminate bacteria from the infected root canal, prevent re-infection of the tooth and save the natural tooth. When one undergoes a root canal, the inflamed or infected pulp is removed and the inside of the tooth is carefully cleaned and disinfected, then filled and sealed. The tooth is restored with a crown or filling for protection and will continue to function like any other tooth. 

What are the benefits of treatment? 

Endodontic treatment helps you maintain your natural smile, continue eating the foods you love and limits the need for ongoing dental work. With proper care, most teeth that have had root canal treatment can last a lifetime. 

How do you know if you need a root canal? 

Root canal treatment is needed when bacteria get within the ‘dental pulp’ due to a crack, broken tooth, deep filling or cavity that may cause pain and/or an infection. 

Some symptoms that might mean you need endodontic treatment include: 

Severe pain while chewing or biting 
Lumps or pimples on the gums 
A chipped or cracked tooth 
Lingering sensitivity to hot or cold, even after the sensation has been removed 
Swollen or tender gums 
Deep decay or darkening of the gums 

Is root canal treatment painful? 

Modern root canal treatment is a painless procedure performed with local anesthetic. It can usually be completed in one or two appointments, depending on the condition of your tooth and your personal circumstances.  

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Although not a Speciality, we also offer expert Dental Implant treatment at Treetops Dental Surgery. To find out more about Dental Implants, please click the button below.

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