Examination and Diagnosis

When the patient visits the dentist for the first time, in addition to the condition of the teeth and the presence of caries, the dentist must also check for the possible presence of periodontal disease and bleeding gums.

Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in the adult population, although most people do not know it. It is very common to have periodontal problems after the age of thirty. This means that some patients will have more or less severe problems of gum inflammation and loss of bone supporting the teeth.

Unfortunately, making a diagnosis is not always easy and we all know that in medicine no two people always react in the same way. Bleeding is one of the frequent symptoms of gum inflammation, but it is not always present. It is common for smokers not to have bleeding.

That is why when we visit the dentist we should always ask about our gum health.

Bleeding gum problems
Probe measuring a bag

To make the diagnosis it is essential to use the Periodontal probe. The probe is an instrument of vital importance for our health. It has a handle and a millimeter tip with a blunt tip to avoid puncturing the gum. This instrument must be properly used by expert hands to obtain the necessary information with it.

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Graduated probe used for periodontal diagnosis

The professional must insert the probe into the space between the tooth and the gum. In healthy conditions, when the gum reaches the tooth, it forms a small fold called Sulcus. This fold must be one or two millimeters long, but in situations of inflammation the epithelial junction that joins the gum to the tooth weakens and migrates in depth, so that it produces a greater depth of this fold. The deeper and inflamed fold is called Periodontal Bag.

The probe will measure the depth of the periodontal pocket, determining the severity of the inflammation and the existing bone loss by means of its millimetric engraving, as bone loss must have already occurred before the gum and tooth union can migrate downwards.

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The dentist, in addition to confirming the presence of pockets, should analyse whether there is tooth mobility, gum recession with exposure of the root of the tooth, presence of furcation lesions, etc.

To obtain a good diagnosis it is important to have adequate radiographic information. For this purpose we use periapical radiographs and orthopantomographies, which can be carried out in our facilities.

With this information he will configure the periodontal chart and establish a diagnosis of the situation which he will communicate to the patient as well as the treatment plan to correct the situation.

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Periodontogram showing the patient's gum data

KEEP IN MIND

  • Gums Musn't Bleed
  • There should be no periodontal pockets.
  • Tooth mobility is an advanced symptom.
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