What is Gum Disease?
If gum disease is not treated, it can become a very serious problem. Your teeth can become loose or can even fall out. Gum disease is usually caused by a buildup of plaque, which is an invisible sticky layer of germs that forms on the teeth and gums surface. The plaque contains bacteria that produce pollutants that can irritate and damage the gums. These are some of the stages of gum disease:
This is the earliest stage of gum disease – sensitivity of the gums caused by the accumulation of plaque in the gum line. If daily brushing and flossing do not remove plaque, it produces toxins (poisons) that can irritate the gum tissue, causing gingivitis. You may have noticed some bleeding during brushing and flossing, and that is because of the plaque. In this first stage of gum disease, damage can be reversed, since the bone and connective tissue that hold the teeth have not been affected.
This is the stage in which the bone and fibers that hold teeth in place are irreversibly damaged. The gums may begin to form a pocket below the gum line, which traps food and plaque. Proper dental treatment and improved home care can help prevent further damage.
Periodontitis Complex / Advanced:
In this final stage of gum disease, the fibers and bone that support the teeth are completely destroyed, which can cause your teeth to shift or loosen. This can affect your bite and, if aggressive treatment cannot save them, it may be necessary to separate or even remove the teeth.
Other common reasons for Gum Disease:
- The hormonal changes associated with pregnancy can increase chances of getting gum disease. The mildest form of gum disease is called “pregnancy gingivitis”
- Smoking has a huge impact on oral health. Smoking build up plaque on teeth over time, resulting in gum disease. Smoke continues to minimize the flow of blood in our bodies, which in return prevents nutrients from reaching the tissue around the teeth.
- One of the most important thing you can do to prevent gum disease is to floss daily before brushing.
Early treatment of the gum disease is very important. The goal of treatment is to prevent gum disease, tissue damage, infection control, and prevent tooth loss.
For treatment to be effective, you must:
- Keep your teeth clean
- Brush twice a day
- Floss once a day
- Visit your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings.