Dr. Bernstein is an Illinois licensed specialist in Periodontics. He offers many services related to this specialty.
The Treatment of Periodontal Disease
In order to understand the treatment, a good understanding of the disease is helpful. It may be best to review the disease in the “Information & Definitions” section.
The goal to ALL types of periodontal treatment is to create a situation that can be kept free of plaque and tarter. This requires elimination of deep pockets, removal of tarter, and knowing proper plaque removal techniques.
Non-Surgical – Gingivitis and Early Periodontitis can almost always be treated with Scaling and Root Planning (deep cleaning.) Also, deep cleanings are usually required in cases that are expected to receive surgical procedures.
Surgical – If deep pockets exist, then the goal of keeping it clean cannot be achieved. The most common method of pocket reduction is a surgical procedure. Sometimes called “Flap Surgery.” It is the time tested, most predictable long-term treatment. The surgery achieves this by primarily moving the gum level closer to the bone level. In some instances, more severe isolated areas may require bone grafts. Surgery is only required on teeth that have deep pockets.
Bone Grafts – Dr. Bernstein uses many bone grafting techniques including synthetic proteins, Human freeze-dried bone, and synthetic bone.
Laser Surgery – The use of the laser for periodontal disease is an option at Dr. Bernstein’s office. He has both the Nd:Yag and the Erbium (Er:Yag) Laser. These are the two most useful types of laser for treatment of periodontal disease. Combined these two lasers create a technique called WPT Wavelength-optimized Periodontal Therapy (See the link) also known as The Twin Laser Periodontal Therapy. It is the next generation with extra steps to improve the results of the proprietary treatment called LANAP. WPT has the advantage of the Erbium laser step. LANAP only uses Nd:Yag. However, there is a controversy with Lasers and Periodontal Treatment. Please see the Laser Information section if further Laser information is needed. Sometimes conventional surgery cannot be performed, such as patients with certain medical conditions. Sometimes there can be negative cosmetic effects with surgery that would best be treated with the Laser. The use of the Laser is surgery. Dr. Bernstein uses the Laser in cases where it can be an advantage over typical surgery.
Regardless of the type of treatment received, all patients receive detailed hygiene instructions. Proper daily plaque control is as important as the treatment. Afterwards, 3 month recalls are required (in office cleanings/scalings.)
Implant Implants have been part of Dr. Bernstein’s practice for 20 years. Dr. Bernstein performs the surgical portion of implant treatment, the placement of the implant and any procedures necessary to prepare the site to receive the implant. If the hopeless tooth is present, it is best to have Dr. Bernstein do the extraction. This will allow for the placement of a bone graft to expedite the placement of the implant. In some cases, the tooth can be extracted and the implant placed the same day. Dr. Bernstein will coordinate treatment with your General Dentist or refer you to one who is experienced in restoring the implant. Dr. Bernstein has within the office, a CT-Cone Beam digital radiograph for those cases that require further analysis. Implant cases that are lacking sufficient bone can be treated by Dr. Bernstein with bone grafting and augmenting. These include adding bone to the base of the sinus, known as a sinus lift. Dr. Bernstein uses multiple types of implants.
Soft Tissue Defects – Gum Recession
The loss of the protective gum tissue can occur by several factors. The most common loss of soft tissue comes from aggressive brushing. Most soft tissue loss can be stabilized and possibly reversed with a number of different soft tissue grafting techniques. The most common is using another part of the mouth as a source of new gum tissue. The palate (roof of the mouth) is the most common. It is similar to skin grafting.
Cosmetic Soft Tissue Correction
Cosmetic correction before and after photoSometimes there is too much gum tissue creating a “gummy” smile and/or short teeth. Carefully reshaping and removing some of the tissue easily corrects this. Sometimes this is best accomplished with the laser. Also, sometimes a small amount of recession may occur creating a long looking tooth. With the soft tissue graft, the exposed root area can be recovered.
Pathology and Other Surgical Procedures
Abnormal growths or lesions can occur, which require biopsy. The abnormality is removed and sent for microscopic pathology analysis. This is a common procedure performed by Dr. Bernstein and he uses an Oral Pathologist for the analysis for the best possible diagnosis. Other abnormalities, such as a large frenum, may exist. These can require a surgical procedure and it may be treated with the Laser.