Dr. Crosland divides his care into three categories: 1) Initial therapy which usually includes scaling and root planing, adjustment of your bite/occlusion, as well as possibly some other ancillary therapy, 2) periodontal surgery if necessary, and 3) maintenance. Once your periodontal treatment has been completed, Dr. Crosland will usually recommend that you have regular maintenance cleanings (periodontal cleanings). Typically, he will have you seen three to four times annually, and if feasible, will have you alternate between his office and your general dentist. Dr. Crosland likes to say that the patient receives the best care possible in that the general dentist is looking primarily at teeth and also gums, and the periodontist is looking primarily at gums and also the teeth. In that manner, you receive the expertise in each area at least two to three times annually.
When our patient returns for a maintenance appointment with Dr. Crosland, the pocket depths will be carefully checked to insure that they are healthy. Plaque and calculus that is difficult for you to remove on a regular basis will be removed from above and below the gum line. Mobility patterns will be evaluated, and any other periodontal/dental concerns will be evaluated as well. In addition to your periodontal cleaning and evaluation, your maintenance recall appointment usually includes: 1) examination of diagnostic x-rays (radiographs) on a regular basis, 2) examination of existing restorations, for example, checking current fillings, crowns, partial dentures, etc, 3) examination for tooth decay, 4) oral screening, 5) oral hygiene recommendations such as reviewing oral hygiene aids like tooth brushes, special periodontal brushes, fluoride rinses, etc, 6) teeth polishing including the removal of stain and plaque that is not otherwise removed during tooth brushing. Remember that it only takes 24 hours for plaque that is not removed from your teeth to turn into calculus (tarter). Daily home cleaning helps control plaque and tarter formation, but those hard to reach areas will always need special attention. Good oral hygiene practices and periodontal cleanings are essential in maintaining your dental and periodontal health.