Gingivitis, the most common type of oral soft tissue infection, is relatively minor and highly treatable when caught early. If you delay treatment, the infection can continually worsen until forming a serious problem such as trench. Trench mouth is named for its widespread presence in the trenches of early wars. While the condition is rarer in modern societies, the infection can still occur in those who continually avoid treatment or who have underlying systemic illnesses.
Symptoms of trench mouth include gums that bleed heavily and often and open, bleeding sores on the gums. If you have these symptoms, you should make a dental appointment as soon as possible to receive treatment from a dentist or cosmetic dentistry professional. Continuing to ignore the problem can lead to sepsis, a potentially fatal blood infection.
What are the treatment options for severe trench mouth?
Scaling and Root Planing
Scaling and root planing is an endodontic treatment that is essentially a deep cleaning for your gums. The dentist will use handheld and ultrasonic tools to ensure that all of the bacteria and grime is removed. Note that the procedure might make your gums even more sensitive in the short term, but it is still necessary for the long-term health of your mouth and body.
One of the most important aspects of scaling and root planing is cleaning out the gum pockets. When your soft tissue becomes severely infected, the gum tissue pulls away from the base of the teeth. The receding gums can pull away to the point that large pockets form, which are great breeding grounds for even more bacteria.
When the pockets are small, the cleaning alone is enough to make the tissue heal back into proper position after some time. Severe pockets will need to be cut, trimmed as needed, and then pulled tight to the tooth and stitched into place.
Receding gums sometimes go straight down rather than forming pockets. The receding gums will make your teeth look longer and in severe cases will expose the sensitive root structures under your teeth. Your dentist will need to perform a gum graft after the cleaning to offer protection for the teeth and improve your cosmetic appearance.
Gum grafts often use material from elsewhere in the patient's mouth, but the presence of a severe infection makes that usage unlikely. Your dentist will instead use donor or synthetic tissue to stitch into place in the areas where your natural gums are lacking. The new material and your existing gums will fuse during healing to make it look like your natural gum line.
Gum grafts can also be used in cases where the gum pockets were so large and baggy that the dentist needed to cut away most of the tissue to pull the gums tight and thus comes up short at the bottom of the teeth. Contact a dental office like Dr Phil Nasralla family dentistry for more information.