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Preventive Care

What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease begins when plaque, a sticky, colorless, film of bacteria, food debris, and saliva, is left on the teeth surfaces and gums. The bacteria produce toxins (acids) that inflame the gums and slowly destroy the bone.

The most common types of periodontal diseases are gingivitis (inflammation of the gums) and periodontitis (inflammation of the gums, attachment and bone).

Gingivitis is caused when allowed to accumulate around the teeth, produing a sticky biofilm known as plaque. These bacteria produce acids (toxins) which causes inflammation of the gums, giving rise to the condition known as gingivitis.

If gingivitis is left untreated, the inflammation may begin to affect the deeper structures including the bone and tooth attachment, developing to next stage of periodontal disease, Periodontitis. In most cases there is no pain felt while this is happening. For this reason many people are affected by gum disease and do not know they have a problem. If left untreated, periodontitis will cause you to lose your teeth.

What causes periodontal disease?

  • Smoking or chewing tobacco
  • Certain teeth or damaged restorative work
  • Side effects caused by several medications
  • Pregnancy, oral contraceptives, and puberty
  • Systemic diseases, such as diabetes, blood cell disorders, HIV / AIDS, etc.
  • Genetics reasons

Signs and Symptoms of Periodontal Disease

  • Red or Swollen Gums
  • Bleeding gums
  • New spacing between teeth
  • Tenderness or Discomfort
  • Shrinking gums exposing the roots of the teeth
  • Bad Breath
  • Infected or Abscessed Teeth
  • Loose Teeth

Treatments Options

In a Gingivitis stage, normally once teeth are professionally cleaned, and the bacteria are removed, the gums usually will return to a state of health. This is a healing response resulting from the removal of the acids, enzymes and toxins which the bacteria were producing.

However, if during your normal teeth cleaning not all plaque can be removed, it may be recommended that a deeper cleaning or scaling be performed.