Periodontal Disease Specialist

Pacific Coast Periodontics

Periodontists located in San Francisco, CA

More than 47% of American adults over age 30 have periodontal disease. Though common, without early intervention and treatment, gum disease can result in serious complications like bone and tooth loss. At Pacific Coast Periodontics in the Union Square neighborhood of San Francisco, California, Sohyun Park, DDS, and the team use advanced techniques to manage periodontal disease. To make an appointment, call the office to speak with a caring member of the administrative staff or click the online booking tool today.

Periodontal Disease Q & A

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is an infection of the gums. It occurs when plaque and tartar build up beneath your gums, causing them to pull away from your teeth.

As your gums recede, they form pockets where harmful bacteria collect. Over time, the infection can spread to your tooth roots and alveolar bone, resulting in potentially serious complications.

What are the types of periodontal disease?

There are several types of periodontal disease, but the team at Pacific Coast Periodontics focuses on two in particular:


Gingivitis is a mild infection of the gum tissue. It causes your gums to become red and swollen, but typically responds to conservative measures of care like brushing and flossing, routine dental cleanings, and eating a balanced diet.


Periodontitis is a chronic infection of the gum tissue that occurs when gingivitis is left untreated. It causes various problems, including loose teeth, persistent bad breath, and bone loss.

Unlike gingivitis, periodontitis won’t heal on its own. It requires professional treatment and management.

What are the symptoms of periodontal disease?

Common symptoms of periodontal disease include:

  • Loose teeth
  • Red, swollen, or tender gums
  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Pain when chewing
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Bad breath

As periodontal disease progresses, you might also experience pus between your teeth and gums.

How is periodontal disease diagnosed?

To diagnose gum disease, the team at Pacific Coast Periodontics conducts a comprehensive oral exam. During the exam, they use a small ruler to measure the pockets around your teeth. Healthy gums have pockets between one and three millimeters deep.

Following an exam, the team takes a series of oral X-rays. They use the X-rays to assess the health of your tooth roots, jaw, and alveolar bone.

How is periodontal disease treated?

Treatment of periodontal disease depends on the type, severity of your symptoms, and their effect on your quality of life. The team at Pacific Coast Periodontics might recommend:

Deep cleanings

Deep cleaning is an outpatient procedure that removes plaque and tartar from between your teeth and beneath your gum line. This process allows your gums to reattach to your teeth, preventing further recession.

Gum grafts

If you have extremely thin or receding gums, the team might recommend a gum graft. A gum graft takes a piece of healthy tissue from another part of your mouth and sutures it over your receding gum tissue.

LANAP® laser dentistry

LANAP is an advanced periodontal treatment that eradicates harmful bacteria and diseased gum tissue. The laser’s unique wavelength prevents the infection from spreading and encourages your body’s natural healing process.

To learn more about the treatment of periodontal disease, make an appointment at Pacific Coast Periodontics by calling the office to speak with a caring member of the administrative staff or clicking the online booking tool today.