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PERIODONTAL

DISEASE

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is an infection of the gums that surround your teeth. It is one of the primary causes of tooth loss in adults. Since it is virtually pain-free, many patients do not know they have the disease. During each regular checkup, we will check for signs of periodontal disease by measuring the space between your teeth and gums.

Periodontal disease forms just below the gum line and creates small pockets that separate the gums from the teeth. It has two stages: gingivitis and periodontitis.

  • Gingivitis — This is the early stage of gum disease, when the gums become red and swollen, and bleed easily. At this stage, the disease is treatable and can usually be eliminated by daily brushing and flossing.

  • Periodontitis — If left untreated, gingivitis will advance into periodontitis. The gums and bone that support the teeth will become seriously and irreversibly damaged. Gums infected with periodontitis can cause teeth to become loose, fall out, or require removal by a dentist.

PERIDONTAL DISEASE SYMPTOMS

  • Gums that bleed easily

  • Red, swollen, tender gums

  • Gums that have pulled away from the teeth

  • Persistent bad breath or unpleasant taste in the mouth

  • Pus between your teeth and gums

  • Loose or separating permanent teeth

  • Any change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite

  • Any change in the fit of partial dentures

INCREASED RISK FACTORS

  • Smoking or using chewing tobacco

  • Diabetes

  • Certain types of medication such as steroids, anti-epilepsy drugs, cancer therapy drugs, calcium channel blockers, and oral contraceptives

  • Bridges that no longer fit properly

  • Crooked teeth

  • Old fillings

  • Pregnancy