Osseous Surgery

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Pocket Reduction Surgery

Osseous surgery, sometimes referred to as pocket reduction surgery, refers to a number of different surgeries aimed at gaining access to the tooth roots to remove tartar and disease-causing bacteria.

Goals of Osseous Surgery

Osseous Surgery is used to reshape deformities and remove pockets in the alveolar bone surrounding the teeth. It is a common necessity in effective treatment of more advanced periodontal diseases. The ultimate goal of osseous surgery is to reduce or eliminate the periodontal pockets that cause periodontal disease. Despite the word “surgery” the procedure is reported to feel more like a thorough cleaning. The specific goals of surgery include:

  • Reducing Spread of systemic Bacteria: Bacteria from the mouth can spread throughout the body and cause life-threatening conditions such as heart disease and respiratory infection. Removing deep tartar with periodontal products can reduce these risks.

  • Preventing Bone Loss: The inflammatory response by our immune system prompted by periodontal bacteria can lead to bone loss around teeth, ultimately leading to tooth loss. Osseous surgery seeks to stop periodontal disease before it progresses to this level.

  • Enhancing the Smile: Mouths plagued with periodontal disease are often unsightly. Gum discoloration, rotting teeth, and ridge deformities can leave a person feeling depressed and self-conscious. Periodontal surgery can restore your smile to its former radiance.

  • Facilitating Home Care: As the gum pocket progresses and deepens, it can become nearly impossible to brush and floss adequately. Osseous surgery reduces pocket depth, making it easier to brush and floss, thereby preventing further periodontal disease. What does the procedure entail?
A local anesthetic will be used to numb the area prior to surgery. First, our Olympia periodontists will incise around each tooth in the affected area to release gum tissue from the bone. This allows access to the bone and roots of the teeth. After the roots have been thoroughly cleaned by scaling and root planing, a drill and hand tools will be used to restore the normal architecture of the bone. Bone is removed in some areas to restore the normal rise and fall of the bone, but at a lower level. Whenever possible, bone grafting in conjunction with the use of growth factors and guided tissue regeneration will be employed to regenerate lost attachment and to fill in large bony defects.

Next, the gums will be placed back over the remaining bone and sutured in place. The site will sometimes be covered with a bandage (periodontal pack) or dressing. Pain medicine and mouth rinses containing chlorhexidine are generally prescribed following the surgery.

Do not be alarmed if slight bleeding and some swelling occurs following the surgery. This can be controlled easily by placing an ice pack on the outside of the affected area. In cases where there is excessive bleeding and swelling, it is advised that you call our office. Several follow up visits may be necessary. The patient must fulfill a meticulous maintenance program, especially during the initial phases of healing, to avoid post-operative infection and to maximize reparative potential.

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