Your bone and gum tissue should fit snugly around your teeth. When you have periodontal disease this supporting tissue and bone is destroyed, forming “pockets” around the teeth. As time goes by, these pockets become deeper, providing a more space for bacteria to accumulate. As bacteria grows around your teeth, it can accumulate and continue under the gum tissue. This can result in further bone and tissue loss. Sometimes if there is too much bone loss the teeth will need to be extracted which we try and avoid.
An osseous surgery, or periodontal pocket reduction procedure, is usually recommended when there are pockets that are too deep to clean with daily at-home care and professional dental cleanings. A periodontist folds back the gum tissue during this surgery and removes the bacteria before securing the tissue into place. For some cases, irregular surfaces of the damaged bone are smoothed to limit areas where more bacteria can hide. This allows the gum tissue to better reattach to the healthy bone. Reducing pocket depth and eliminating existing bacteria are important to prevent damage caused by periodontal disease and will help you maintain a healthy smile. This procedure can be done painlessly in one or more visits, depending on how many areas need to be treated, in our office.
Once this procedure is completed most patients will usually be put on a periodontal maintenance schedule where they will then alternate cleanings between our office and their dentist.