Gum Disease and How to Stop It

Gum Disease and How to Stop It
Posted on 03/25/2018

Gum disease, also referred to as periodontal disease, is an infection in the tissue and bones that surround and hold up the teeth. Bacteria found in plaque mainly cause gum disease.

There are several types of gum disease, the mildest is gingivitis. A person with gingivitis has red or inflamed gums, which bleed easily. Good oral hygiene is the first defense against gingivitis or any other gum disease.

When gingivitis is not treated, it can lead to a more severe infection called periodontitis. Periodontitis damages the teeth’s supporting bones and tissues, creating gaps between teeth and gums and eventually causing tooth loss.

While bacteria in plaque is the primary cause of gum disease, other contributing factors include smoking and stress, both of which decreases the body’s ability to fight off infection. People with diabetes and other diseases that weaken the body’s immune system are also at a high risk of developing gum disease. Lack of proper nutrition can worsen this condition. Hormonal changes during puberty, pregnancy and menopause may also make a person vulnerable to this kind of infection. In some cases, gum disease is genetic and early detection is usually the best way of prevention and treatment.

The following are symptoms of gum disease: mouth pain, frequent gum bleeding, gum swelling, mouth sores, pus in between gums and teeth, bad breath, sensitive teeth, loose teeth and receding gums. If you have any of these symptoms, consult your dentist immediately.

If it is determined that you have gum disease or periodontal disease, the next step would be to seek treatment from a periodontist or a specialist. A periodontist will be able to tell you if you should proceed with non-surgical or surgical treatment.

Usually, the first step to treating gum disease is a procedure called scaling which involves removing plaque and tartar in between teeth and gums all the way to the roots.

Root planing is another way to smooth the surface of the roots. These methods are usually enough to get rid of the problem but if your condition persists, surgery is another option. Surgical treatment may include flap surgery where gum tissue is pulled back to clean the roots completely, grafts to replace destroyed tissues and bones, and other procedures that stimulate tissue and bone growth.

You can prevent gum disease by brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing and visiting your dentist regularly. These simple reminders are the key to keeping your gums healthy and your teeth intact.

Call Your Jackson Alabama General & Cosmetic Dentist Dr Stanley Beard's office today at (251) 246-3385 to schedule your dental checkup. Start the fight against gum disease before it gets you...

Stanley R. Beard, D.M.D., FAGD

  • Beard Dentistry - 2620 College Ave., Jackson, AL 36545 Phone: 251-246-3385

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