Gum Disease Treatment
Any time you come in for a routine checkup and cleaning, or if you’re a new patient, we will do a periodontal (gum) exam. During this exam, we’ll be checking for the general health of your gums, whether there is any gum recession, inflammation or infection, and we’ll check the health of the underlying bone to ensure that you are healthy. If any signs of gum disease are present, we will let you know. Periodontal disease can be completely painless, so it’s important to have a dental professional check to ensure that you’re healthy.
If it’s not treated early enough, periodontal disease can permanently damage your bone and cause you to lose teeth. However, if we catch it early and you are committed to treating it well at home, we can usually limit periodontal disease, especially gingivitis, very effectively.
Periodontal disease has many stages, including:
- Gingivitis is a very early, reversible stage of gum disease. It is characterized by red gums that bleed easily. Bacteria under your gums can produce a chronic, low-grade infection from gingivitis. If gingivitis is not addressed early, it can progress quickly to the next stage of gum disease, periodontitis.
- Despite your best efforts at home with a toothbrush and floss, there’s only so much bacteria that can be removed from under your gums. As bacteria continue to build up under your gums, they can colonize and form soft plaques or hard calculus (formerly called tartar) under your gums. This infection causes bone loss and recent studies have shown that periodontal disease is a contributing factor in adult-onset diabetes, preterm delivery of babies and severe heart conditions. It is that serious, not just for your oral health but your overall body health, too. Periodontal disease can be treated and we can stabilize it. However, once bone starts to break down, it usually cannot be regrown.
- Advanced periodontitis
- If dental bacteria are still not resolved, they can cause a severe infection called advanced periodontitis. Teeth with advanced periodontitis are usually loose, can have pus around them, are extremely inflamed and can have a very poor long-term prognosis. Sometimes, advanced periodontal disease can’t be treated and the teeth simply must be extracted. In other cases, we can sometimes save your teeth using a combination of surgery and medications.
About Dr. Ahn
Dr. Chanook David Ahn is a periodontist who specializes in dental implant surgery and the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease. Dr. Ahn also specializes in esthetic and functional soft tissue surgeries. His keen judgment and technical skills ensure optimized performance in procedures for each patient. With the respect of his peers and with his reputation for combining his well-proven techniques with the latest advances in dental technology, he is highly sought after as a lecturer and currently teaches dental students at the University of California Los Angeles.
Dr. Chanook David Ahn is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Madison with a BS in Biochemistry. He worked at the renowned David Watkin’s AIDS Vaccine Lab and during his time as a research specialist he was published in multiple manuscripts for the Journal of Virology.
After a year in AIDS research, Dr. Ahn attended Tufts University-School of Dental Medicine Boston and graduated in 2013. With his passion for excellence Dr. Ahn completed a 2-year General Practice Residency at Yale – New Haven Hospital as chief resident and was awarded resident of the year. During his training at Yale, having acquired clinical skills and experiencing countless varieties of dental cases, his passion to encompass all aspects of dental health lead him to pursue a specialty in periodontal surgery at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System where he graduated as co-chief resident.
Since 1997, Dr. Ahn has been on numerous international medical volunteer trips to various third-world countries in conjunction with several non-profit groups to places such as South Korea, Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, Sakhalin, India, and Peru. While Dr. Ahn’s academic background and surgical talents are noteworthy, it is his compassionate dedication to his patients and his passion to provide excellence in care that truly sets him apart.