Gum disease or periodontal disease is the inflammation of the gum line caused by infection of bacteria from plaque buildup on the teeth. Toxins within the plaque bacteria break down the connective tissue and bone encompassing the teeth. If left untreated, gum disease can have an irreversible effect on the bone that surrounds and supports your teeth. In adults, gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss.
There are two types of periodontal disease:
is usually characterized by tender, red, swollen gums that bleed easily and can cause bad breath. Early treatment is effective but delaying treatment can cause gingivitis to worsen.
shares the same symptoms as gingivitis, but damages the bone and connective tissue leading to possible loss of teeth.
These infections are usually painless, until it is too late. At our office, we strive to continually monitor your periodontal health and aim to address any infections prior to causing any tooth or bone loss.
Signs of Gum Disease - swollen, red, tender or bleeding gums, consistent bad breath or bad taste in your mouth, receding gum line, loose teeth, mouth sores, developing spacing between teeth or even visible pus.
There are different methods to treat this infection depending on the severity of your problem. We like to begin treatment as conservatively as possible but will be as aggressive as needed to manage this infection. A large portion of the early stages of periodontal disease can be treated by a series of thorough and/or more frequent cleanings. Another more involved treatment is to debride the roots of your teeth using instruments that must go under your gums while numb from anesthetic. This procedure is known as root planning and scaling, or sometimes known as a “deep cleaning.” This "deep cleaning" is a non-surgical approach to help heal your gums, however in some cases true surgery may be needed to help save your tooth.