Brushing and flossing are a vital part of your dental hygiene routine. However, brushing and flossing alone are inadequate to completely clean your teeth. Remember, your teeth extend down below the gum line and into your jawbone. These areas are hidden from view and cannot be reached by brushing and flossing alone. That’s why we perform perioscopy as part of our regular preventive maintenance on patients.
What is perioscopy?
Perioscopy is a procedure that involves using a miniaturized tool called an endoscope. The endoscope is inserted below the gum line and uses a tiny light and camera to send us a picture of the hidden pockets next to your tooth root. This lets us spot any trouble areas where bacteria are collecting.
Once we find pockets of bacteria we use probes (called micro ultrasonics) to clean the tooth root completely. During the procedure, we display a video feed on a monitor so you can see what we are doing.
Why would I consider perioscopy?
Perioscopy has a number of advantages over other traditional methods of cleaning below the gum line such as periodontal surgery. For one thing, it is minimally invasive, meaning that the experience is less traumatic to you, and recovery time will be much faster. For another, because we are able to put a camera down under the gum line, we can identify the bacterial pockets faster; in addition, using the camera, we can avoid hitting the root of your tooth any more than necessary, decreasing the chances of you becoming overly sensitive in the tooth. Finally, because we have the video feed from the camera, we are able to identify other dental conditions that might have been missed in the past, leading to better overall preventive dentistry.
Is it expensive?
No! Actually, compared to more traditional methods of treating periodontitis such as surgery, perioscopy is actually significantly cheaper—sometimes costing as little as 1/3 of what other treatment options might cost. This, in addition to the other benefits noted above, makes it an ideal option for many patients.
Does perioscopy cause significant pain?
Compared to traditional methods of cleaning out significant bacteria pockets, perioscopy can actually be less painful. Certainly, it is less painful than outright surgery, and traditional methods of cleaning below the gum line where the dental professional inserts a pick and operates blindly can be more traumatic than a perioscopy. We have anesthesia available for your comfort if you find the process too discomforting, but we believe you will be happy with how easily it goes.
Is perioscopy right for me?
As with any dental or medical procedure, there are a number of factors to consider when determining whether perioscopy is the right treatment option for you. We are here to help you figure out the best treatment option for you, and we are happy to spend some time with you answering your questions and making recommendations in light of your specific situation. Call us today and we’ll be happy to set up a time to talk with you.