Gum disease can be treated in a remarkable way that lasts for four to five hours.
Gum disease, the primary cause of tooth loss, affects up to 50 per cent of the population with often irreversible consequences.
Early signs of infection are swollen or bleeding gums, bad breath and sensitivity. Known as gingivitis, if caught early the condition is easily treated with professional cleaning.
But in serious cases, the gums and underlying ligaments can become infected. This condition, periodontitis, may result in the teeth moving out of alignment. It can attack without symptoms and, despite careful oral hygiene, erode the bone supporting teeth and cause gums to recede.
But now, a treatment aimed at chronic sufferers is being pioneered by dentists at The Hale Clinic in Central London.
The new procedure, called BOST - Bone One Session Treatment - involves the mouth being cleaned in one session, lasting four to five hours.
"We use a gentle gum-stretching technique to reach the root surfaces. Infected tissue is spongier and elastic, so it is possible to gently push it back manually using tiny scoop-shaped instruments known as curettes. The gum can then be stretched just like skin, allowing us to cleanse the infected tooth underneath," the Daily Mail quoted Hale clinic dentist Dr Yvan Micholt as saying.
"We scale and rootplane-every square millimetre of every tooth and root, as deep as any pocket reaches. A thin layer of dentin, the material that cements the tooth into the gum, which will have been colonised by the bacteria and impregnated with their destructive enzymes, is scraped from the root surface. This regrows," Micholt added.