While most of us focus on keeping our teeth healthy and attractive, it’s also important not to skip the important part of our mouth that holds the teeth – the gums. You don’t only lose your teeth due to trauma or ageing. You can also lose them because of gum disease.
Gum disease can be deadly, if left untreated. Chronic gum infections not only destroy your dental health, they can also affect your heart and other parts of your body. For this reason, it’s imperative to keep your teeth’s support structures strong and healthy.
At DentArana, we comprehensively diagnose and treat problems that affect your gums and jaw. Everyone is at risk of gum disease. Our mission is to educate you on the importance of keeping your gums disease-free and how periodontitis can affect your overall wellbeing.
What is Gum Disease?
Periodontal disease is a bacterial disease that affects the gums, its ligaments, and the alveolar bone (part of the jawbone). Gum disease is primarily caused by plaque build-up. The accumulation of plaque causes the gums to be inflamed and irritated.
When the health of the gums is compromised, the seal between the teeth and gums becomes broken and accessible to the harmful bacteria. The bacterial infection can go deep into the tissue and cause severe damage to the underlying bone and periodontal ligament. Without medical intervention, this problem can result in tooth loss.
Signs of Gum Disease
Gum disease is also called a “silent killer” as the disease can harm your oral health without showing any symptom. Gum disease can cause negative changes to you teeth, dental work, and gums themselves.
Changes that can happen to your teeth, bite, and dental work:
- Teeth become loose or separated
- An unusual change with the fitting of your teeth when biting
- Your filling becomes defective
- The denture or dental bridge no longer fit properly
Changes that can happen to your gums and mouth:
- Gums become swollen and inflamed
- Bleed easily every time you brush or floss teeth
- Gums start to recede, causing teeth to look longer
- Persistent bad breath and metal taste in your mouth
- Pus surrounding the teeth and gums
- A mouth sore that doesn’t heal within two weeks
The Progress of Gum Disease
Gingivitis – this is the first stage of periodontal disease. At this stage, the bone and gum tissues have not yet been affected and the disease be easily managed with dental cleaning and proper oral hygiene routine.
Periodontitis – this is the second and advanced stage of periodontal disease. Periodontitis result from untreated gingivitis. At this stage, the gums and its connecting tissues are starting to shrink and expose the root and the bone structure. As a result, a pocket form below the gum line, trapping more food, plaque and bacteria.
Untreated, periodontitis can cause irreversible damage to the teeth’s supporting tissues and even result in tooth loss. Aside from this, it can cause major systemic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis. Early diagnosis and treatment can improve the symptoms of gum disease and save your teeth.
Treatments for Gum Disease
Treating gum disease may involve non-surgical and surgical procedures. For mild cases of gum disease your dentist will recommend non-surgical approaches such as:
- Improving your dental care at home such as brushing your teeth regularly and flossing your teeth the right way. Using the right toothbrush is also advisable to avoid damage to teeth and gums.
- Reducing consumption of acidic and starchy foods, which can cause formation of plaque and tartar build-up.
- Visiting your dentist at least twice a year for regular check-up and cleaning. Scale and root cleaning is a dental cleaning procedure that involves deep cleaning of gum to remove deposits of plaque and tartar.
For advanced stages of gum disease, your dentist may recommend surgical procedures such as:
- Pocket reduction to remove the harmful bacteria from the gum tissues. This involves applying local anaesthetic to the affected area before folding back the gums and suturing them back into proper placement.
- Bone regeneration, which involves using tissue-stimulating proteins to regenerate bone and gum tissue.
Gum Disease Solutions at DentArana
At DentArana, we help you keep your gums just as healthy as your teeth with our comprehensive preventative care services. If you do have gum disease, we will thoroughly examine your teeth and gums and provide the best treatment plan to restore the health and form of your gums.