Metro Dental Health
11150 Fairfax Boulevard
Fairfax, VA 22030
Metro Dental Health
2112 F Street, NW
Washington, DC 20037
Genetics and Periodontal Problems
In treating patients for periodontal disease it is important to monitor the success of the treatment, which includes follow-up care with your periodontists, the specialist who treats gum disease and the supporting structure of your teeth. One thing that many people are not aware of is that gum disease and periodontal disease can be hereditary and each member of family should keep a close eye on their periodontal and gum health.
Periodntal disease runs in families, and long-term studies and follow ups of family members confirm this. What this means is that if you have been diagnosed with periodontal disease your children are considered in higher risk for juvenile periodontitis, also known as aggressive periodontitis.
Without “probing” between the teeth and gums (measuring the gap between the gums and teeth) and x-rays, the diagnosis of the early stages of periodontal disease can be easily missed. Many times patients dislike the examination, and while it may not be your favorite thing to do, if there is a high risk for disease, you should do it anyway, especially for your children.
Now considering that this can cause the lack of an early diagnosis, avoiding having a thorough examination can cause future advanced problems, which we, of course, want to avoid. Currently there are techniques that can make the examination less uncomfortable. After all you are going to the dentist to make sure you have healthy teeth and gum.
As much as your dentist wants to and will work to make it a pleasant visit, you are coming to get healthy. Now if you are very sensitive (which is another clue of an existing problem) there are different ways to make you comfortable. Please do not avoid the inevitable by refusing to have a complete exam, which includes periodontal probing.
Early diagnosis is the key for most diseases including advanced periodontitis. The children with aggressive periodontitis can sometimes be treated with just medications, or simple treatments, and keep their teeth for life but this requires early diagnosis and intervention.
Please if you, your children or other member of your family is suffering with gum problems make sure they have a thorough evaluation by a periodontist for early diagnosis and treatment as needed. It can save you a lot of heartache down the road.