Treatment methods depend upon the type of disease and how far the condition has progressed. The first step is usually a thorough cleaning that may include scaling to remove plaque and tartar deposits beneath the gumline. The tooth roots may also be planed to smooth the root surface allowing the gum tissue to heal and reattach to the tooth. In some cases, the occlusion (bite) may require adjustment.
Antibiotics may be recommended to help control the growth of bacteria that create toxins and cause periodontitis. This may be done to control infection and to encourage normal healing.
When deep pockets between teeth and gums are present, it is difficult or impossible for the patient and even the hygienist to thoroughly remove plaque and calculus. Patients can seldom, if ever, keep these pockets clean and free of plaque. Consequently, surgery may be needed to restore periodontal health.