Signs, Causes and Treatments
Plaque and tarter lead to Gingivitis, the first form of Periodontal Disease. Regular checkups, dental cleanings and good oral hygiene will prevent the onset of this condition.
Periodontal Disease Explained
Periodontal diseases are infections to the gums, and have two classifications: a milder form of the disease known as gingivitis and a more advanced form of the disease known as periodontal disease. Gums that are red, swollen, and bleed are indicative of gingivitis; gums that have bacterial infections that affect not only the gums but also the bone that support teeth have the more severe periodontal disease.
Reports estimate that approximately 80 percent of adult people develop periodontal diseases, while research further suggests a possible link can occur between periodontal disease and other health issues. Not only does periodontal disease contribute to possible tooth loss because of receding gums and inflamed gums, but periodontal disease also can contribute to medical conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and strokes.
More about the Classification of Periodontal Diseases
As mentioned, periodontal disease presents itself in two forms: gingivitis and periodontitis. Over time, plaque deposits that linger along the gum line cause gingivitis. Plaque is a sticky matter composed of bacteria, mucus, and food debris, and if not remove properly by adequate brushing and flossing techniques, develops on the exposed parts of the teeth causing tooth decay. If you do not remove the plaque, it further develops into a hard deposit called tartar, settling at the base of the tooth. Plaque and tartar are the perfect breeding ground for receding gums or inflamed gums. In addition, the bacteria and toxins produced by plaque and tarter cause the gums to become infected, swollen, and tender.
Initially, gingivitis, the mildest form of periodontal disease, causes little or no discomfort. At this point, your dental team at Advanced Dental Care of Jasper, Texas, can reverse the negative effects of gingivitis. At home, you will want to maintain the reversal process by practicing good dental care by brushing and flossing regularly; however, if you allow gingivitis to go untreated, it progresses to periodontitis, which is irreversible and leads to chronic infection in the pockets surrounding the teeth. The chronic infection leads to continual inflammation of the gums and bone, creating conditions that often result in tooth loss.
Reasons Why Periodontal Diseases Develop
Poor dental care and lack of regularly scheduled dental check ups are the main reasons why individuals develop periodontal disease; however, the following conditions can contribute to periodontal disease, as well:
- You are pregnant.
- You have crooked teeth.
- You have diabetes.
- You have a dental bridge that no longer fits properly.
- You take certain medications.
- You smoke or chew tobacco.
Indicators of Periodontal Disease
If you experience any of the following conditions, please call Advanced Dental Care as soon as possible to schedule an office visit. Remember; early detection of gingivitis is the preventative way to eliminate the possibility of a more severe periodontal disease.
- You have gums that bleed easily when you brush or floss.
- You have inflamed gums: gums that are red, swollen, or tender.
- You have receding gums: gums that have pulled away from your teeth.
- You have persistent bad breath.
- You have pus between your tooth and gums
- You have loose or separating teeth.
- You have noticed a change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite.
- You have noticed a change in the fit of your partial dentures.
Treatment for Periodontal Disease
During your regular dental exam, Advanced Dental Care looks for any indicators of periodontal disease, including receding gums or inflamed gums. The early detection of periodontal disease makes it possible for Dr. Koch or his hygienist to begin a treatment to reverse the disease. Depending on the degree of your gingivitis, your treatment may require scaling, root planing, antibiotic therapy, and irrigation. In the case of severe periodontal disease, Dr. Koch may be required to perform treatments that are more advanced.
Preventing Periodontal Disease
You want to practice good oral health by scheduling regular dental check ups. In addition, you want to remember that by brushing and flossing regularly and eating a balanced diet, you keep your smile healthy and bright.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are some of the early warning signs of periodontal disease?
Some of the signs of periodontal disease to look out for are:
If you notice these signs or any other concerning symptoms, call our office as soon as you can by dialing 409-224-8197. Dr. Koch can examine your gums and determine if you have periodontal disease or another issue, then provide effective treatment.
Is periodontal disease reversible?
The early stages of periodontal disease are reversible. If you have gingivitis, you may even be able to reverse the issue by simply improving your at-home oral hygiene practices. Visiting a dentist can be extremely effective for improving the health of your gums, though.
In the later stages of periodontal disease, you’ll require professional help for your oral health to recover. Dr. Koch can perform a scaling and root planing procedure to remove the buildup of bacteria as well as make it less likely to return.
What happens if periodontal disease goes untreated?
Untreated periodontal disease can have serious consequences. Your teeth can become loose and fall out, affecting your ability to chew, speak, and smile. Advanced gum disease can affect not only your smile but also your health.
Bacteria from periodontal disease can spread to other areas of your body. You may be more susceptible to cancer as well as other health complications. Periodontal disease can be painful and have dire consequences, so it’s important to seek help as soon as you can.
What are the stages of periodontal disease?
There are three main stages of periodontal disease. These stages are: