Welcome to 2020! What an exciting start already. My name is Victoria and our patients at Westside Dentistry often ask about gum disease, what it is and how do I fix it?
Well today, I’m going to tell you. Gum disease is a pathological inflammatory condition. Simple words please!
Let’s break it down in stages. Gum disease is broken up into two separate stages: gingivitis and periodontitis. Periodontitis can be in the early, moderate or advanced stages.
Gingivitis occurs because a film of bacteria, called plaque, accumulates on the teeth. Bacteria also accumulates in the pockets between your gums and teeth. This causes redness and swelling of your gums. I like to say “There’s still gunk on your front teeth and I send my son back to brush his teeth better!”
Gingivitis is quite prevalent. But while almost 80% of adults will experience some symptoms of gingivitis, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s inevitable. It’s important to note that occasionally there might be no noticeable pain or apparent signs, leaving people unaware that they have it. At this stage your teeth won’t be loose, just a very bad stinky breath. Sometimes, your gums bleed a little when you brush.
Periodontitis literally means “inflammation around the tooth”. Left untreated, these diseases can lead to tooth loss. It affects the soft and hard structures that support the teeth.
Gingivitis is the only stage of periodontal disease that is reversible as it has not yet had time to attack the bones. Periodontitis, on the other hand, means the bone around your tooth is lost forever.
So, there you have it. Come in and see Dr. Jay for regular check-ups and a clean is so very important to your gum health. Also, brushing twice a day and flossing, more than a week before seeing Dr. Jay is really important.
Hope this has helped with your understanding of gum disease.
Until next time,