Dental Design of Wheaton: Shri Chopra, DDS

Dentist located in Wheaton, MD

Dental Design of Wheaton, in Wheaton, Maryland, knows that dentistry doesn’t just mean focusing on teeth -- but on the gums as well. From the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of periodontal disease to helping prevent oral inflammation and performing various dental implant procedures, Dr. Chopra passionately does it all. And she treats every patient like a member of her own family, using a steady balance of patience and care to alleviate the anxiety associated with dentist visits. To learn more about periodontics, call her office or book an appointment online.

Periodontics Q & A

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is an inflammatory disease that affects the gums and all the other areas that support your teeth. It generally starts with gingivitis, where your gums become red, swollen, and can bleed during brushing and flossing.

In a nutshell, it’s plaque. The germs in the plaque, when not cleaned well, sit around and affect the healthy gum tissue around your teeth. This causes irritation, inflammation, and redness, which causes bleeding during brushing, flossing, etc. Bleeding gums are the first potential sign of gum disease -- also known as gingivitis -- so be on the lookout.

If not treated, gingivitis can lead to the most advanced form of periodontal disease: periodontitis. With harmful bacteria eating away at the gums, supportive tissues are often destroyed, leading to bone loss, which usually results in tooth loss as well.

What is scaling and root planing?

Scaling and root planing is periodontics talk for “deep cleaning.” Unfortunately, turning your electric toothbrush on max levels won’t clean well enough. That’s why it’s vital to visit Dr. Chopra for a deep cleaning, especially if you have early signs of gum disease or a more progressive form.

Scaling entails going below the gumline to remove plaque and tartar. Once scaled, Dr. Chopra will begin the root planing process by smoothing out the tooth root, followed by a technique that gently re-attaches your gums to your teeth.

How does periodontics treat infected gums?  

As Dr. Chopra completes the scaling and root planing procedure, if she sees an infection within the below-gum-line area, she can carefully treat the area with a specially formulated periodontal antibiotic called ARESTIN. It’s a simple, quick, and painless treatment that typically comes in the form of powder or liquid. Patients should not eat or drink 30-minutes after treatment and should wait 12 hours before brushing teeth.

After therapy, it's absolutely vital to exercise proper dental hygiene, brushing twice a day and flossing daily as well. This is not only for best practices amongst the general dentistry world but also because you want the treatment you just received to be effective.

Is laser gum therapy right for you?

Dr. Chopra is always at the forefront of technology when it comes to her practice, and the implementation of laser gum therapy is no exception. You may be a little nervous thinking about a laser being in your mouth, but rest assured it’s safe.

If recommended for you, Dr. Chopra will locate the infected areas that need treating prior to performing your deep cleaning; she will then use the laser to treat the inflamed gum tissue around your tooth’s root.

Benefits of noninvasive periodontics laser gum therapy include:

  • Little to no anesthesia
  • More accurate
  • Less painful with reduced bleeding
  • Decreased recovery time

To learn more about periodontics and gum disease treatments, including laser gum therapy and if it’s right for you, call Dental Design of Wheaton or schedule an appointment online today.