Gum disease is a sneaky thing. It tends to progress very slowly due to the stealthy buildup of something called plaque, which can be nearly invisible. Plaque eventually develops into a harder form called tartar. When things get this bad, only a dental professional or “dentist near me” can remove it.
What is gum disease?
Gum disease is a common medical condition that is medically known as periodontal disease. It is an ongoing inflammatory infection of the soft gum tissue surrounding the teeth. Left unchecked, gum disease can cause teeth to eventually loosen and even fall out.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by plaque, which is a sticky type of biofilm that attaches to teeth and can accumulate under the gum line. Plaque is caused by oral bacteria that feed upon the foods that you eat, particularly sugars and carbohydrates. That is why you are constantly reminded to limit your intake of sugary foods and beverages.
As plaque develops, the oral bacteria contained within it will secrete substances that are highly acidic, damaging both the teeth and gums. As the gums become inflamed by these acids, they eventually become infected, which is a problem because they are supposed to support your teeth.
What are the stages of gum disease?
Gingivitis is the earliest form of gum disease. It can be reversed if you get serious about your oral care routine at home. Brush and floss your teeth twice a day and floss them once daily. You should also be visiting your dentist for regular dental cleaning appointments to remove accumulated plaque.
Periodontitis is the most serious form of gum disease. Unfortunately, it is not reversible. The good news is that it can be slowed or stopped if you practice proper oral hygiene at home and undergo frequent dental cleanings at your dentist’s office.
What are the symptoms of gum disease?
You may have gum disease if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Red and swollen gums
- Tender gums that bleed easily
- Receding gums
- Persistent bad breath or foul taste in the mouth
How is gum disease treated?
Scaling and root planing is a very common type of treatment for gum disease. Your dental hygienist would use specialized tools to scrape away any plaque or tartar on your teeth or under the gum line.
In cases of advanced gum disease, you may also undergo root planing. This process involves smoothing out the tooth roots so that oral bacteria has fewer places to hide.
LANAP and LAPIP are two other types of treatments that are available for gum disease. These are laser procedures that help to remove diseased tissue to encourage your teeth to reattach to your gums. Fortunately, our Dentist Near Me offers these advanced treatments.
Schedule Your Appointment
Although you may be experiencing some early signs of gum disease that are visible to you, you will still need to make an appointment to receive a proper diagnosis. If you suspect gum disease, please reach out to our Dentist Near Me to schedule an appointment. Be sure that you are also coming in for your regularly scheduled dental exam and cleaning appointments. New patients are welcome.