Plenty of people in this country suffer from some type of gum disease, and you might be one of them.
If you are like a lot of other people, you probably don’t even know you have gum disease.
Gum disease ranges from mild to severe, and it not only takes a toll on your oral health, but it can also take a toll on your overall well-being. In fact, there are now studies that have shown unhealthy gums can increase your risk for such ailments as diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
If you do have gum disease, it’s important to seek treatment for it before it becomes worse.
At Kittrell Family Dentistry, we believe that healthy teeth and gums are critical for our patients’ overall health. The best way to fight periodontal disease is to receive treatment for it. When you come in to our office, we will examine your gums to ensure they are healthy.
Don’t risk your overall health. Make an appointment today for a teeth cleaning and examination and find out the status of your gum health.
What Is Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease is commonly known as gum disease, and it describes the condition that occurs when plaque below your gumline hardens and turns into tarter. If the tarter is not removed through regular dental cleanings, the gum tissue will ultimately pull away from the teeth. Pockets are then created, which cannot be cleaned with regular brushing and flossing.
If teeth are not professionally cleaned and these pockets go untreated, the tissue and bones that keep your teeth in place will be destroyed. This will cause bone loss, which will lead to your teeth shifting and moving. Eventually, when gum disease is severe enough, it can cause tooth loss.
In addition to poor oral care and lack of professional cleanings, other factors can play into your risk of developing gum disease. Genetics plays a role in how our body responds to bacteria in the mouth as do outside factors such as smoking.
Symptoms of Periodontal Disease
The milder form of gum disease is known as gingivitis. It is referred to as periodontitis in its more advanced stage.
Some patients have no symptoms at all of gum disease, which has caused it to be dubbed "a silent disease." Other patients do have symptoms, however, and they often present as follows:
- Bad breath that won’t go away
- Bleeding gums, particularly when brushing
- Loose teeth
- Pus between teeth and gums
- Red, swollen, tender gums
- Teeth that look longer as gums recede
You should know that none of these symptoms is considered normal, so even if you are experiencing just one, you need to get to the dentist immediately.
Treating Periodontal Disease
The earlier gum disease is identified, the easier it is to treat.
Deep cleaning, also called scaling and root planing, is a nonsurgical way to treat gum disease. For more advanced stages, cleanings more than twice a year might be called for, as well as antibiotics. If gum disease is advanced, surgery or laser treatment might be required to reduce the pockets in the gums.
Contact Us to Keep Your Gums Healthy
If you haven’t had your teeth cleaned professionally in a while or you are experiencing any signs of periodontal disease, give us a call today! We will examine you and develop a treatment plan if you do have gum disease.
Sooner is always better than later when it comes to dentistry, so don’t wait.