Gum Disease (Periodontal Disease)
Gum disease (also referred to as periodontal disease) is an infection of the bone and soft tissues that support the teeth. gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease and while relatively free of pain, it can cause symptoms such as bleeding gums.
More advanced forms of the disease infect bones and supporting structures of the teeth. The advanced forms of gum disease can lead to concerns such as bone and tooth loss.
What is the typical cause of gum disease?
some of the most commonly seen causes of gum disease include plaque and bacteria buildup in the mouth, hormonal shifts, smoking, nutritional deficiencies, some prescription medications, uneven teeth and even genetics.
Bleeding gums is one of the first visible signs of gum disease which make it crucial to contact your dentist as soon as you notice this. Because your mouth contains millions of bacteria, great oral hygiene every day is a must - to disrupt the bacteria.
If it is left too long, your body will try to rid itself of undisturbed bacteria by sending more blood to your gums. The excess blood may cause swelling, soreness, bleeding and redness. Your body thinks it has an infection - this is called gingivitis, and it won't heal until the source of the infection is eliminated.
Bacteria can be found in plaque, tartar or calculus, pockets beneath the gums (in cases of advanced gum disease), cavities, abscesses and chipped teeth. Bacteria can also call the crevices around old dental work their home and cause issues if not properly cleaned away.
How can you help avoid experiencing gum disease?
Avoiding gum disease has no shortcuts. You will need to brush and floss your teeth and attend routine professional dental exams and cleanings in order to help prevent this condition from occurring.
It will take a combination of the factors listed for the terrible symptoms of gum disease to appear. If you maintain a rigorous and thorough oral hygiene routine, it will be very difficult for gum disease to start to take hold.
For example, while you may be prone to plaque buildup (perhaps due to genetics), as long as you brush and floss your teeth twice a day and visit your dentist as prescribed for regular professional cleanings and checkups, chances are that gum disease will not be able to fully develop.
Whether a pregnancy causes a hormonal shift, you take prescription medication or are a regular smoker, the most common cause of gum disease is the unimpeded development of bacteria and plaque in the mouth.
Most of the time, gum disease can be easily prevented with a good oral hygiene routine. While the issues listed above can increase your risk (and make prevention more challenging), whether it actually develops comes down to the decisions you make every day about your oral health practices.