6707 HWY 431 S. Suite 103 Owen's Cross Roads, AL 35763

Current Patients 256.534.1475

New Patients 256.202.4186

Periodontal Disease Treatment Owens Cross Roads AL

Periodontitis, also known as gum disease, affects the health of the teeth and gums. The early stages of gum disease can be reversed, but as the infection progresses, it can be challenging to treat. Dr. Elizabeth Duling offers periodontal disease treatment for patients in her Owens Cross Roads, AL dental office. She helps patients revitalize their oral health with restorative dental treatment.

The most common causes of gum disease are smoking, tobacco use, certain medications, and improper oral hygiene. Keeping on top of your dental health helps ensure that gum disease does not worsen over time. Periodontitis begins when harmful bacteria build up and form plaque on and around the gums. Plaque can irritate and inflame the gums, ultimately leading to painful symptoms.

Gum Disease in Owens Cross Roads, Alabama

Symptoms of Gum Disease

Gum disease can manifest through multiple symptoms:

Please contact our office if you have noticed mild to moderate symptoms of gingivitis or periodontitis. We aim to help our patients through in-office care or referrals to trusted specialists.

The Stages of Gum Disease

If you have healthy gums, they should be firm and pink in color. The following are the different stages of gum disease and what you can expect to see if you have them.


This is the first stage of gum disease and the only one reversible. A large proportion of the adult population in America has gingivitis, and they don’t realize it. None of the early warning signs are painful and can sometimes be hard to notice. Typically, the primary warning sign is bleeding gums. See if your gums are bleeding regularly, particularly after brushing and flossing. You can also see if your gums look puffy or red in certain areas.

Diligent oral healthcare is the treatment at this stage. We’ll have you come into the office more often for dental cleanings to keep the condition under control. We may also recommend brushing and flossing your teeth more often at home or investing in a water flosser. Sometimes, we prescribe a microbial rinse to fight the disease-causing bacteria inside your mouth.

Mild Periodontal Disease

The condition is no longer reversible when we reach this stage. The bacteria become more aggressive and start attacking bones. We manage the condition with techniques called scaling and root planing. With gum disease, pockets form between your gum tissue and bone, filling with bacteria and debris. We clean these out so that they’re free of any debris. Then, we smooth down the tooth roots so the gum tissue can reattach to the bone.

Moderate Periodontal Disease

The bacteria continue to become more aggressive in this stage. In addition to attacking bone, they get into the bloodstream as well. This can spread inflammation and infection throughout your body, causing problems in other areas. Like mild gum disease, we use scaling and root planing for this stage.

Severe Periodontal Disease

At this stage, your mouth is full of disease-causing bacteria. Your gums ooze pus and blood, you have severe bad breath that you can’t get rid of, and it hurts to bite, chew, and even speak. Since they’re losing their foundation, your teeth loosen and can fall out. We must refer you to a trusted periodontist for further treatment at this stage. Only laser gum treatment or gum surgery can manage the condition at this stage.

Scaling and Root Planing

Scaling and root planing remove plaque and calculus above and below the gum line. This treatment is a deep cleaning that smooths down the rough surfaces of the tooth roots to minimize future buildup. This procedure also helps the gums reattach to the teeth. We use a local anesthetic for scaling and root planing. Our dentists will take radiographs before and after to remove all buildup.​

We can also refer you to a periodontist for more advanced gum procedures or surgeries. Patients with moderate to severe cases of periodontitis may require gum grafts, flap surgery, or other often intensive procedures.

Periodontal Disease Treatment FAQs

Periodontal disease impacts many American adults. Learn more about the disease and treatment by reading the answers to these commonly asked questions.

Is scaling and root planing painful?

If necessary, your dentist will administer a local anesthetic before beginning for your comfort. However, in general, the procedure is not painful. Your teeth and gums may feel sore afterward, but this should go away in a day or so. Additionally, some people experience minor swelling and bleeding. This, too, is entirely normal and resolves on its own in about a day.

What will happen if I do not treat my gum disease?

Irreversible damage to your teeth, gums, and underlying jawbone is inevitable if you ignore your gum disease. This progressive disease can lead to gum recession, tooth loss, and bone loss. These conditions are very hard and expensive to treat. Additionally, severe infections in your mouth can impact your overall health. Gum disease is linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and more.

Can gum disease be cured?

If you display early signs of gum disease, known as gingivitis, your gum disease can be managed and reversed. However, if left to progress and reach the stage of periodontitis, then it will most likely be something you deal with for a lifetime. Periodontitis causes severe damage to your teeth, gums, and bones. At this stage, we will just try to control the disease as best as possible.

Contact Our Dental Office

Are you noticing signs of periodontitis, like gum irritation or bleeding? Call our office at 256.202.4186 for care. You can also request an appointment with Dr. Duling online.