October 22, 2015

keeping your mouth healthyDo you suffer from swollen or bleeding gums? Are your teeth sensitive, or do you experience pain when chewing? If so, you may have periodontal disease, which is more commonly known as gum disease. While these symptoms are obvious indicators of gum disease, there are some cases where patients do not experience any signs at all. That is why a bacterial evaluation can be so important.

Never heard of one before? No problem. Read on to learn the answers to some of the most common questions that our patients have about bacterial evaluations.

What is a bacterial evaluation?

In many instances, patients are unaware that they are suffering from gum disease. This can lead to a host of complications as the bacteria that is left untreated may start to destroy gum tissue, bone, and teeth.

In a bacterial evaluation, we will obtain samples of bacteria from around your teeth. These samples will allow us to do an in-depth evaluation on the types and number of bacteria that are present. This thorough examination will enable us to make an accurate diagnosis of your dental health as well as methods for the best periodontal treatment plan for you.

What happens during a bacterial evaluation?

A bacterial evaluation is a chairside, non-invasive test that can be performed in minutes. Depending on your needs, we have a variety of test options to choose from, including:

  • Microscopy
  • In-office BNA enzymes testing
  • DNA analysis with the use of an offsite lab
  • In-office cultures for certain types of fungal infections

How does a bacterial evaluation affect my periodontal treatment?

A bacterial evaluation allows us to make very specific recommendations based on the types of bacteria that we discover. For instance, we may select a certain medication for you that would be most effective in fighting off the type of bacteria present in your mouth.

Additionally, we use bacterial evaluations to determine the success of your periodontal treatment. Prior to periodontal treatment, we will perform a bacterial evaluation. Then, once the periodontal treatment is complete, we will do a second bacterial evaluation. By comparing the before and after results, we will be able to see how effective the treatment was.

Why is a bacterial evaluation so important?

Periodontal disease does not just wreak havoc on your gums and teeth, but it can also affect your overall health. Essentially, gum disease is an infection and inflammation in the oral cavity. This inflammation is believed to be the reason that gum disease has also been linked to more serious health conditions like diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.

Joan Otomo-Corgel, American Academy of Periodontology President, adds, “There are more than 500 bacterial species that can be found in plaque, and brushing alone does not remove the bacteria that live below the gum line. The good news about periodontal disease is, with proper and timely care, it is treatable and often reversible. If a person is at risk for periodontal disease, a periodontist has the training and expertise to determine the best course of treatment.”

I’d like a bacterial evaluation. How can I schedule an appointment?

Simply call our office at 614.478.7757 or click here to fill out our online appointment request form. Not only is it easy to schedule an appointment with us, but you will also love our convenient location in Gahanna, an Eastern suburb of Columbus.