Gum Disease Symptoms
Bleeding gums – Gum tissue may bleed if brushed too aggressively or a hard bristle toothbrush is used. It is not necessary to scrub teeth to control plaque build-up. If gums bleed without provocation, visit your dentist.
Red, tender, or swollen gums – The appearance of gum tissue can be an indicator that inflammation and plaque build-up are leading to the onset of gingivitis.
Chronic Bad Breath – Certain foods and beverages can result in bad breath; however, if your breath is constantly sour, you may be suffering from gum disease.
Loose or painful teeth – Do not delay seeing your dentist; if gum tissue appears to be pulling away from one or more teeth, this is another sign of gum disease.
Root Planing and Scaling
A deep cleaning involves going beneath the gum line and scraping away plaque, and smoothing the surfaces of the roots to help prevent recurrence. This is usually the first treatment suggested in the early stages of gum disease. If there is any indication of periodontitis (the advanced stage of gum disease), more aggressive treatment options may be recommended.
Causes of Gum Disease
In some cases, genetics can play a role; however, there are other factors that contribute to the development of gum disease.
Neglect – Patients need to brush at least twice daily and floss every day to remove what their toothbrush missed. Regular visits with the dentist to have teeth cleaned is necessary for good oral health.
Smoking/Tobacco Use – Everyone knows that smoking is detrimental to your overall health; but patients that use tobacco are much more likely to experience gum disease and tooth loss.
Diet – The regular consumption of sugary snacks and beverages can lead to gum disease and dental decay.
It is important to note that even the most vigilant person might be faced with the need for root planing and scaling or other periodontal treatment; if treatment is recommended, a frank discussion with your dentist will identify the factors that might be contributing to your condition.
Follow your dentist’s advice, use an antibacterial rinse if prescribed, and brush/floss every day to maintain optimum dental health.