Gum disease is most commonly caused by a bacterial infection and can lead to a number of oral health issues.
We all want healthy teeth and gums, as well as a beautiful smile. But, oral health concerns like gum disease can cause a range of uncomfortable symptoms. A common concern, gum disease begins as gingivitis, which is an inflammation of the gums. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to a more serious form of the condition known as periodontitis. Both of these conditions can lead to some serious oral health issues, such as tooth loss. Read on to find out what causes gum disease, and how it can be prevented…
What causes it?
There is a space known as the sulcus at the point at which the gums attach to the teeth. Food particles, plaque and bacteria sometimes get stuck in this space, which can lead to infection and gingivitis. When plaque is left on the surface of the teeth and gums, it can harden and form tartar. If plaque and tartar extend below the gum line, an infection can occur.
If left untreated, gingivitis can cause the gums to pull away from the teeth, which in turn causes damage to the soft tissues and bone that supports the teeth. When this happens, the teeth can become loose, and even result in tooth loss or the need for an extraction.
Some factors which increase the risk of gum disease include smoking, certain medications, diabetes, broken fillings, pregnancy, and certain genetic factors that make some people more prone to the issue than others.
What are the symptoms?
Some of the symptoms of gum disease include red, swollen and bleeding gums, loose teeth, receding gums, pain when chewing or biting, and persistent bad breath. If you suspect that you might have gum disease, we recommend that you see your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist may recommend a deep cleaning which involves the removal of plaque and tartar. In some cases, antibiotic medicines may be prescribed to help get gum disease under control.
How can it be prevented and treated?
The best way to prevent gum disease is to practice proper oral hygiene. This means brushing your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and flossing your teeth daily. Eating a balanced diet that is high in whole foods and low in processed sugar is also good for your oral (and overall) health. Another way to keep gum disease at bay is to see your dentist for regular check-ups and cleans. Early treatment is generally very effective in avoiding complications at a later stage.
If your dentist identifies gum disease, the first step in the treatment is to perform a non-surgical cleaning below the gum line in a procedure known as scaling and debridement. If non-surgical treatment is not successful, your dentist may recommend periodontal surgery. This procedure helps to stop the progression of bone loss.
How can we help?
At Beenleigh Marketplace Dental, we offer treatments for gum disease, including non-surgical cleaning and periodontal surgery. To find out more about these treatments, please have a look here.
If you would like to arrange an appointment to see us, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Our team offers a range of treatments designed to help you maintain optimal oral health. Our practice is modern, safe and friendly, and we look forward to welcoming you to our well-equipped space.