Your gums and the underlying jawbone are important parts of your oral cavity since they anchor your teeth. These structures provide a strong anchorage, thus maintaining the integrity of your mouth. Any damage to these structures supporting the teeth can cause periodontal disease.
Fishers, IN dentist offers comprehensive diagnosis and treatment modalities for periodontal disease to maintain the vitality of your gums and jawbone.
Periodontal disease explained
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, refers to infection and inflammation of the gums and the surrounding structures. It usually begins at the gums and may progress to the underlying jawbone if left untreated.
Almost half of the adults in the United States have some form of gum disease. It is one of the leading causes of tooth loss.
Types of periodontal disease
Periodontal disease is often classified based on the stage of the disease, including:
- Gingivitis: Involves only the gums (gingiva).
- Mild periodontitis: The disease spreads, leading to pocket formation and gum recession. This is also accompanied by early loss of bone around the teeth.
- Moderate to advanced periodontitis: The most severe form of the disease with significant bone loss and tooth mobility.
Causes of periodontal disease
Plaque buildup and bacterial infiltration are the prime suspects leading to periodontal disease.
Other contributing factors include:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Poor lifestyle habits like smoking and tobacco use
- Excessive alcoholism
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Hormonal changes as seen during puberty, pregnancy, or menopause
- Certain medications
- Some autoimmune disorders like lupus
Signs and symptoms of periodontal disease
The most common signs and symptoms of periodontal disease include:
- Red, swollen gums
- Soreness and tenderness in the gums
- Bleeding while brushing
- Receding gums
- Loose teeth
- Halitosis (bad breath)
- Pus discharge in between the teeth and gums
- Altered bite and jaw alignment
Treating periodontal disease
Treatment for periodontal disease depends on the type of the disease and the stage. These include:
- Oral prophylaxis
- Dental cleaning
- Root planing
- Antibiotics to treat infection
- Antiseptic mouthwashes and gargles
- Pocket reduction
- Gum flap surgery
- Regeneration procedure
- Soft tissue graft
- Bone grafting
- Crown lengthening
- PRP (platelet-rich plasma) therapy
Periodontal disease most often goes undiagnosed since it does not present with any significant signs and symptoms, especially in the early stage. It is essential to know the warning signs suggestive of periodontal disease. This paves the way for timely management, since if left untreated, it can take a toll on your gums and overall oral health.
Periodontal or gum disease can even spread to other areas of your mouth and or other parts of the body. This can increase your risk of other systemic diseases. Seek dental care if you notice any symptoms before the condition deteriorates.