5 Signs of Periodontal Disease

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5 Signs of Periodontal Disease

Periodontal (gum) disease, a bacterial infection caused by plaque, is one of the most common and destructive dental conditions. Gum disease affects nearly half of Americans every year.

Left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to tooth and bone loss. The two most common periodontal diseases are:

  • Gingivitis – inflammation of the gum at the necks of the teeth, and
  • Periodontitis – inflammation affecting the bone and tissues of the teeth.

Most cases of gum disease are caused by poor oral hygiene. Other common causes are diabetes, use of certain medications, tobacco use, poor diet, and a genetic predisposition.

However, most gum disease begins as simple gingivitis, which can be easily treated and prevented.

5 Signs of Periodontal Disease

Here are five warning signs of periodontal disease:

  • 1. Swollen, red gums are a sign of inflammation and a possible indication that your body is trying to fight-off a bacterial infection under the gumline.
  • 2. Bleeding gums after brushing or flossing. Healthy gum tissue is resilient to the friction caused by brushing and flossing. But gums that are even mildly inflamed from disease can bleed at the slightest touch.
  • 3. Tooth sensitivity. When left untreated, gum disease can cause the gum line to recede, exposing the more sensitive areas of the tooth. Sensitivity to hot or cold, while also a sign of tooth decay, is always a sign that it’s time to visit the dentist.
  • 4. Loose or shifting teeth. As diseased gum tissue causes loss of gum and bone attachment, the affected teeth will start to feel loose or even move to a different position. This is a late and alarming sign of gum disease — without immediate intervention, you’re in danger of losing the tooth.
  • 5. Abscess on the gum or roof of the mouth. When infected gums begin to separate and pull away from the tooth surface, a small pocket is formed where debris and germs can collect. This can form into an abscess as the body tries to wall-off the infection. An abscess needs immediate attention as bone loss is greatly accelerated compared to normal gum disease.

Gum disease is best dealt with in its early stages making early diagnosis vital for successful treatment. If you are experiencing any of the 5 Signs of Periodontal Disease, schedule an appointment with Bixby Knolls Dental Group so that we can evaluate your situation and begin treatment right away.

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