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This treatment is performed by a dentist or a dental hygienist. Sometimes a special ultrasonic device is used to remove heavy deposits. Then plaque and tartar are removed (scaling), and the root surfaces are smoothed (root planing). This helps keep the area free of bacteria. It may also help ligaments that have broken down to reattach to the teeth. This reduces the depth of pockets that have formed in the gums around the teeth.
Infection can be treated with antibiotics, which decrease bacteria. Pills may be prescribed. Or the antibiotic may be placed directly into the infected pocket.
Bite problems such as an uneven bite can worsen bone loss. Grinding or clenching the teeth may contribute to the problem. A splint or other ways of adjusting the bite can reduce pressure and help control the damage.
Home care is your best weapon against periodontal disease. Daily brushing and flossing can help improve your gum health. This can prevent tooth loss, and may also help you avoid surgery. It’s easy to make a habit of brushing and flossing—and it’s not too late to start! Ask your dentist to show you the right way to brush and floss.