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What is gum disease?

Gum disease is caused mostly as a result of poor oral hygiene, among other reasons. Gum disease is an inflammation of the gums, and it may extend to the bone surrounding and supporting the teeth. This inflammation reaching the bone damages it irreversibly, and this stage is known as periodontitis (commonly called pyorrhoea). There are two main stages of the gum disease, and if it is not addressed and treated in time, it may lead to tooth loss.

Stages of gum disease:
Gingivitis:

It is the inflammation of gum tissue around a tooth, usually caused by the dental plaque formed close to the gumline. If the plaque is not removed and if it accumulates, the bacteria present in it produce toxins, which may irritate the gum tissue causing it to swell, become red and even bleed easily.

gum disease Periodontitis:

If gingivitis is left untreated, the inflammation reaches and affects the bone and the surrounding tissue. Pockets may be formed between the tooth surface and gum or surrounding tissue, resulting in loosening of the teeth from the supporting bone. If the pockets increase in depth, or if the tooth becomes loose, it may result in tooth loss eventually, or in a condition where a dentist has to remove the tooth. Apart from this, advanced stages of gum and periodontal inflammation may even require surgical procedures.

Symptoms of gum diseases: Prevention of gum disease:

The best way to prevent gum disease is to prevent plaque formation and maintain good oral hygiene. This may be done by:

Treatment:

The gum disease can be treated in early stages by maintaining good oral hygiene. It can also be treated by professional plaque and tartar removal, by procedures called scaling and root planing. If the infection has reached advanced stages, the treatment may require extensive gum regenerating and/ or surgical procedures.


Dr. Darlington – Kids & Childrens Dentist in Katy