Periodontology (also: periodontics) is the specialty of dentistry that deals with the supporting structures of teeth, such as: alveolar bone, cementum, gingiva (gums) and the periodontium. Periodontology can be divided into two branches. The first deals with the corrections on the periodontium and the second one with the treatment of the supporting structures of the teeth.
The Correction of the Periodontium
The corrective techniques include gingivectomy, i.e. the removal of the excess gum tissue followed by the removal of the extra bone supporting the tooth in order to achieve the symmetry of the gum.
Disease and Treatment of the Supporting Teeth Structures
The diseases of the supporting structures include gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis is the initial condition in which the disease is limited to the gum tissue only. At this stage, the bone and other structures are still intact. The cause of this condition is a multitude of bacteria resulting from inadequate oral hygiene and consequently the accumulation of calcium. The calcium serves as an ideal medium for collecting bacteria and thus enables the progression of the disease to other structures. Removing dental deposit and tartar is the adequate treatment of gum inflammation.
Periodontitis is the disease of all the structures that make up the supporting structures of the tooth. It is a continuation of inflammation of the untreated gums. The symptoms include bleeding gums, tooth mobility (loose teeth), the accumulation of tartar, dental plaque, as well as swollen, fiery red gums.
The treatment includes the removal of plaque deposits using ultrasonic extensions, sandblasting, root scaling, root planing, and in certain cases, an additional antibiotic therapy. When treating gingivitis and periodontitis it is of great importance to provide the patient with the instructions on the adequate dental hygiene and the proper maintenance of the oral cavity.