What is Gum Disease?

Anyone, regardless of age, can develop gum disease in dayton ohio. It is even possible to have gum disease and not realize it! Gum disease progresses in three stages, from most mild to most severe, they are: gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. If you have ever noticed a pink tinge when you spit after brushing, you may have early stages of gum disease.

Gum disease causes inflammation of the gum tissue and can lead to the deterioration of tissue and bone structure. If bone begins to fail, you could be at risk for losing teeth. Infection of the gum tissue happens when plaque is allowed to build up over time and harden into tartar.

Signs and Symptoms of Gum Disease

There are a few things you should know to be on the lookout for if you suspect you may have gum disease. Some signs include:

  • Red and puffy gums
  • Gums bleed easily during brushing and flossing
  • Gum recession and loose teeth
  • Halitosis, bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth that won’t go away
  • A change to the fit of restorations
  • A change in your bite or shifting teeth

If you suspect that you may be suffering from gum disease, it is important to get to your dentist as soon as possible. The effects of gingivitis can be reversed but if it progresses into periodontitis, irreversible damage can be a threat. There are a few risk factors that can put you at higher risk for developing gum disease. Some risk factors include:

  • Genetics
  • Pregnancy, appropriately called “pregnancy gingivitis”
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Smoking
  • Medications
  • Crowded teeth and a bad bite

Development of Advanced Periodontitis

If you are proactive and visit your dentist as soon as you suspect you may have gum disease, you can keep gingivitis from progressing into a more detrimental stage of gum disease. Gingivitis develops when the sticky plaque bacteria is allowed to accumulate and harden into tartar which cannot be removed on your own. To keep plaque at bay, it is important to have a good oral hygiene routine that involves brushing your teeth at least twice a day with a soft-bristled brush and flossing at least once a day. Incorporating an antibacterial mouthwash can be very beneficial as well!

Since tartar requires a professional dental cleaning to clear away, it is important that you visit your dental office at least twice a year to have your teeth professionally cleaned. Without these regular professional cleanings, tartar can accumulate in the gum pockets and cause damage to the gum tissue and connective tissue. This is gingivitis advancing to periodontitis and takes more effort to treat and can be irreversible.

Without proper treatment, periodontitis can progress into advanced periodontitis and may require the care of a Periodontist, a dental professional specializing in the treatment of the gum tissue. Advanced periodontitis can cause further damage to the gum tissues and also to the jaw bone, which can lead to the loosening of teeth and even cause teeth to become hopeless and require extraction.

More on Gum Disease: Cure Gum Disease