Gum disease is a serious situation and if it is not treated in a timely manner, you can experience irreparable harm to your teeth and gums. One of the most important things you must know about gum disease is that it is typically silent until it reaches the later stages. This means that you could have gum disease and not know that you do until it has progressed. Once periodontal disease sets in, you will have damaged done to the bones and ligaments that hold your teeth in place.
Periodontal disease is gum disease and is the leading cause of most tooth loss in adults. Since there are multiple stages of the disease, it is important that it is addressed in a timely manner.
The very first stage of gum disease is often detected when you go for a checkup at the dentist. If the gum disease is not treated at this time, it can progress and become worse. More than half of adults have some type of gum disease and more than three quarters over the age of 35 have periodontal disease.
Below, Dr. Bien will discuss the reasons why periodontitis forms and can be severe, the symptoms, and the treatment for it. If you would like to learn more about gum disease or receding gums, call our Fremont office today to schedule an appointment.
PERIODONTAL DISEASE: WHAT IS THE CAUSE?
One of the major causes of periodontal disease is plaque and the way it interacts with the bacteria that is in your mouth. When the plaque and bacteria mix together, toxins form and these toxins are what cause irritation to the gums. This is the process by which the gum tissue is aggravated and separates from your teeth. If you do not seek out any treatment at this stage, the bone will be affected and result in tooth loss.
Tartar forms on the teeth when plaque is not cleaned off them. When the tartar reaches under the gum line, you experience inflamed gums and it irritates them even more. Only a dental hygienist or Dr. Bien can remove the tartar from your teeth.
There are several factors that contribute to how severe your periodontal disease may be. Some of those reasons include:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Food that is impacted between your teeth
- Certain medications
- Poorly fitting bridges
- Clenching or grinding of your teeth
- Defective fillings
- Poor diet and nutrition
- Smoking and chewing tobacco products
- Badly aligned teeth
- Oral contraceptives and pregnancy
- Diseases such as Diabetes or AIDS
SYMPTOMS OF PERIODONTAL DISEASE
As we mentioned, the symptoms of gum disease are often silent or invisible until the disease has progressed. Some of the most common symptoms that patients experience includes:
- Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- Teeth that have gums receding on them
- Swollen, red, and tender gums
- Pus in between the gums and teeth
- Gums that bleed when you floss or brush
- Teeth that are loose or teeth that have shifted in place
- Tooth loss
- Changes in the way your dentures fit or how your teeth fit when you bite down
- Persistent bad breath
HOW IS PERIODONTAL DISEASE TREATED?
Dr. Shirley Bien wants you to call our Fremont, CA office immediately if you think that you may have periodontal disease or if you have noticed a change in your gums or teeth. Gum disease can be treated but the longer you wait, the harder it is to treat the condition and you may experience irreparable harm as well.
Gum disease is treated through a process known as deep cleaning and this is when the tooth’s roots are cleaned, and all tartar is removed from them. This type of cleaning is also called root planing and scaling. The procedure is not quick and is extensive, which means you will need to visit our office several times.
In the later stages of periodontal disease, deep pocket formations will form, and this often leads to the need for prescription medications.
RECEDING GUMS: WHY?
If you have noticed that your gums are receding, you may be alarmed and worried. The condition itself is not always worrisome but the cause of it can be. Typically, people think that it is a sign of aging and it very well is, but, what is most important to know is that periodontal disease can cause gum recession as well. Since three out of four individuals do have gum disease, it is no surprise that this side effect will go unnoticed until you reach the later stages of the disease.
The earliest stages of gum disease often result in silent symptoms and you may only notice that the gums are red and swollen. At this point, the symptoms and disease can be reversed. As the disease is untreated and progresses, the damage becomes irreparable. In these situations, teeth may fall out or become loose and is often the number one reason as to why adults over 40 experience tooth loss.
While gum disease sounds scary, it can be treated, and it is important that you seek out professional dental care immediately. While periodontal disease likely causes gum recession, aggressive toothbrushing may as well. Dr. Bien will help you learn how to properly brush your teeth to avoid further recession of the gums.
If you do have gum recession, it is important that you make sure to have it checked as you may need fillings or a graft to cover the exposed root to prevent sensitivity.
SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT WITH US TODAY
Whether you have good oral health, or you are concerned about receding gums, it is important for you to schedule an appointment here at Greenhills Dental Care. Dr. Bien will work closely with you to address any concerns you have and treat any gum disease you may have as well. If you would like to come into our Fremont office, call us today to book your appointment.