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What Is Gum Disease?
There are three kinds of gum disease: gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis. All three are the result of an infection caused by bacteria that are present in plaque. Plaque isn’t normally harmful if it’s brushed away regularly and hardened plaque (called tartar) is removed with regular dental teeth cleanings. Gingivitis is the mildest form of gum disease, where the bacteria in plaque irritate the outside of the gums. There’s a gingivitis cure if you get treatment, but if left untreated, gingivitis may progress to periodontitis if the infection gets underneath the gums.
Why Do Certain People Develop Gingivitis?
Inadequate brushing and flossing causes gingivitis. Some people who cannot fight infections easily are more prone to developing gingivitis. Nearly 50 percent of those over age 30 have gingivitis, usually because of poor oral hygiene. A survey by Delta Dental showed that 37 percent of Americans ages 18 to 24 go at least two days without brushing their teeth. Another startling statistic showed that 20 percent of Americans never floss. These statistics are alarming because untreated gum disease leads to tooth loss. It’s essential to get gingivitis treatment before it advances to a more destructive type of gum disease.
What Are the Signs of Gingivitis and What Causes Them?
Typical gingivitis symptoms include:
- Darker gums
- Bleeding gums when you brush and floss, caused by bacteria buildup
- Puffy gums from inflammation
Often, only some areas of the mouth will show signs of gingivitis. If it’s only affecting the gums above your molars, it can be easy to miss the gingivitis symptoms. Having a routine exam every six months gives your dentist a chance to spot gingivitis before it can turn into a more advanced form of periodontal disease.
What Are the Signs of Gum Disease?
If you have one or more of the following gum disease symptoms, you may have periodontal disease:
- Gingivitis symptoms
- Gums pulling away from teeth
- Chronic bad breath
- A bad taste in your mouth
- A change in the way teeth fit together
- Loose teeth
If you have any of these indications of gum disease, please contact us for an appointment with a dentist experienced in treating gum disease in Mishawaka.
There Are Three Gum Disease Stages
Gingivitis is a benign form of gum disease. The gingivitis cure is proper brushing and flossing and regular teeth cleanings by a dental hygienist or dentist. If you don’t receive gingivitis treatment, there’s a chance the gingivitis will advance to periodontitis, which attacks the support structures holding your teeth in place. This can lead to tooth loss. The risk factors for developing gingivitis, besides poor oral hygiene, include tobacco use, heredity, pregnancy and certain medications.
Periodontitis is a progressive disease where bacteria infect your gums and bone. Unlike gingivitis, the infection gets beneath your gums and you develop periodontal pockets. These are plaque-filled pockets four or more millimeters deep between your teeth at the gumline.
As periodontitis progresses, you lose more bone and gum tissue. Teeth become loose and fall out. You may need extractions if the teeth don’t eventually fall out on their own, as chewing and speaking will be difficult. Studies have linked periodontitis and advanced periodontitis to severe systemic health issues such as heart disease.
How Do I Cure Gingivitis?
You can try a gingivitis cure at home, or visit a dentist for the best results. A dentist will provide a professional teeth cleaning to remove tartar buildup near your gums. Only dental professionals can remove tartar , using special instruments; you can’t remove tartar at home. If you have signs of gingivitis, we urge you to contact our office for a diagnosis and a cure that has a very good chance of being effective.
Is Gum Disease Treatment Painful?
Modern methods of numbing and sedating patients prevent treatment for periodontal disease from becoming uncomfortable. Gum disease treatments vary according to the severity of the disease. Gingivitis treatment typically consists of a teeth cleaning and instruction on proper at-home oral hygiene. Periodontitis treatment may include a deep cleaning and medication. Treatment for advanced gum disease often requires surgery to reduce the periodontal pockets, and grafts to replace destroyed gum tissue and bone.
Is Reversing Gum Disease Complicated?
Reversing gum disease isn’t complicated if you only have gingivitis, since a gingivitis cure is possible. Periodontitis and advanced periodontitis are irreversible, but dentists can treat moderate and severe forms of gum disease and eliminate many of the uncomfortable gum disease symptoms. There’s no gum disease cure after gingivitis but this doesn’t mean you’ll automatically lose your teeth. However, you’ll need lifelong professional dental care to keep your gum disease under control.
If you need to see a dentist for treatment for gum disease in Mishawaka, please contact us. We’ll be happy to schedule a convenient appointment for you.