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Antibiotic Treatment

Periodontal disease is a progressive condition that leads to severe inflammation and tooth loss if left untreated.  Antibiotic treatments can be used in combination with scaling and root planing, curettage, surgery, or as a stand-alone treatment to help reduce bacteria before and/or after many common periodontal procedures.

Antibiotic treatments come in several different types, including oral forms and topical gels which are applied directly into the gum pockets.  Research has shown that in the case of acute periodontal infection, refractory periodontal disease, prepubertal periodontal disease and juvenile periodontal disease, antibiotic treatments have been incredibly effective.

Antibiotics can be prescribed at a low dose for longer term use or as a short term medication to deter bacteria from re-colonizing.

Topical Gels and Strips

The biggest advantage of directly delivering antibiotics to the surface of the gums is not affecting the entire body.  Topical gels and direct delivery methods tend to be preferred over their oral counterparts and are extremely effective when used after scaling and root planing procedures. Here are some of the most commonly used direct delivery antibiotics:

  • Arestin® – This Minocycline antibiotic comes in mini capsules which are delivered into the gums after scaling and root planing.


ARESTIN post-treatment instructions for patients


For 1 week after treatment:


  • Do not touch the sites treated with ARESTIN
  • Do not chew hard, crunchy, or sticky foods (such as carrots, taffy, or gum)

For 10 days after treatment:

  • Do not floss or use other tools to clean between the treated teeth
  • Mild-to-moderate sensitivity is normal. Advise your patients to contact you if they have severe pain or signs of an allergic reaction (such as itching or swelling)

Keep up with treatment:

  • Scheduling and keeping follow-up visits can help maintain control of periodontal disease


Noticeable periodontal improvements are usually seen after systemic or oral antibiotic treatment. We will incorporate antibiotic treatments as necessary for the healing of your periodontal condition.

If you have any questions about periodontal disease or antibiotic treatments, contact our practice at your convenience.