Signs of gum disease and treatment options from your North Brunswick dentist
If your gums bleed when you brush or floss, chances are good you are in the some stage of gum disease. Gum disease is common and also treatable, but you need to get started early. If left untreated, your gum disease can progress to periodontal disease, and you can eventually lose teeth! Dr. Iyoti Shah, of Brunswick Family Dentistry in North Brunswick, New Jersey, wants you to know how to stop gum disease before it becomes more serious.
Gum disease, also called gingivitis, is actually the beginning stages of periodontal disease. Gum disease is inflammation of your gums, and you get gum disease chiefly from inadequate brushing and flossing. Dr. Shah wants you to know that inadequate oral hygiene results in a buildup of plaque which contains large amounts of damaging bacteria. Your gums react by showing signs of inflammation, including:
- Red, bleeding gums
- Swollen, puffy and painful gums
- Pain when you chew
- Frequent bad breath
- Gum recession and root exposure
Gum disease turns into periodontal disease when disease attacks the bone supporting your teeth. The toxins produced by plaque bacteria start to destroy your bone, in addition to destroying the soft tissue support of your teeth. What used to be a small crevice that you floss into, has become a deep periodontal pocket, almost impossible for you to clean.
If you have periodontal disease, also called periodontitis, you will have all the same signs of gum disease and you may also have:
- Sensitive teeth and exposed tooth roots
- Loose, mobile teeth
- Teeth that may be shifting out of correct position or moving
If you have gum disease, it can be reversed by practicing excellent oral hygiene. That means you need to:
- Brush after meals and before bed
- Floss at least once daily
- Visit your dentist every six months for check-ups, x-rays and professional cleanings
If your gum disease has progressed to periodontal disease, Dr. Shah will suggest a regimen of supportive periodontal therapy which includes more frequent cleanings, usually every 3 to 4 months. Your treatment may also include root planing, which is a systematic, thorough cleaning of deeper pocket areas, and smoothing your tooth roots.
Whether you have gum disease or periodontal disease, it’s vital to seek treatment because delay can cause tooth loss! Call Dr. Iyoti Shah of Brunswick Family Dentistry, in North Brunswick, New Jersey, and get help today!