Gum Disease & Periodontal Therapy
Gum disease is one of the most common diseases among adults in the United States. Whether you know it or not, you may be suffering from some form of gum disease. Periodontal disease ranges from minor inflammation, all the way to a serious problem that leads to major damage in your gums and jaw bone. In some cases, gum disease can advance enough that tooth loss is experienced. Not only can gum disease lead to tooth loss, and other oral health problems, it can also lead to many general health issues. If you are curious about some common signs and symptoms of gum disease, Dr. Ginn has listed them below with other commonly linked health conditions.
Protect yourself from the disease responsible for most of America’s adult tooth loss.
Gum disease is a sneaky disease that has been linked to:
- Increased risk of heart attack, stroke, diabetes
- Diabetes complications
- Low-weight births
- Many other adverse health conditions
Early symptoms of gum disease include:
- Red, tender gums
- Bleeding when brushing teeth
- Pockets between teeth and gums
Gum disease come in two different forms: Gingivitis and Periodontitis.
When plaque and tartar are able to build up and sit on your teeth, they cause harm and wreak havoc. The bacteria that builds up can cause inflammation in your gums. This is called gingivitis. When you have gingivitis, your gums become extremely swollen and red. Additionally, your gums will have a tendency to bleed with little provocation. Gingivitis is considered to be a mild form of gum disease and can be dealt with by brushing, flossing, and regular check ups with your dentist. When you have gingivitis, you will experience no form of bone loss.
When left untreated, gingivitis may advance to periodontitis. Periodontitis is a more advanced form of gum disease that causes your gums to pull away from your teeth. After this has occurred, pockets will form between your teeth and gums which will likely become infected. Your body’s natural reaction to infection in these areas can cause your bone and connective tissue to break down. If you do not receive treatment for periodontitis, your bones and gums will experience extreme loss causing your teeth to become loose. Advanced periodontitis eventually leads to tooth loss.
What are gum disease treatment options?
Now that you know what gum disease is, what some signs and symptoms are, and what health effects it can have, let’s take a look at some treatment options that are available.
If your gum disease has not advanced too far, Dr. Ginn and his staff will recommend a deep cleaning. A deep cleaning utilizes special tools in order to remove tartar—hardened plaque—from beneath your gum line. Next, the rough areas of your root will be smoothed out so it does not leave an area for germs, and plaque to gather. This process is also commonly known as scaling and planing. Dr. Ginn and his staff may also decide to administer some antibiotics in order to reduce the infection.
If your periodontal disease has advanced too far, Dr. Ginn will refer you to a periodontist. Your periodontist will need to perform surgery to remove the tartar and plaque build up and restore your gums and mouth back to a healthy state.
How to maintain optimal gum health:
After you have received treatment for your gum disease, it is important to maintain good oral health. Gum disease, like diabetes, hypertension, and others, is a chronic illness. This means that it can be treated, but cannot be healed. The first step in continuous treatment is to schedule routine visits to Dr. Ginn to receive frequent cleanings. The staff at Ginn Dental Care will also teach you how to adjust your home care in order to further prevent gum disease.