Suffering from gum disease means the tissue that supports the teeth is infected. This infection is dangerous to the body and can potentially lead to tooth loss and other health risks.
The mouth is filled with bacteria that form plaque on your teeth. We brush our teeth and floss to get rid of this plaque, but if it isn’t removed, the plaque soon hardens and forms calculus, which cannot be removed by brushing.
Once your teeth have developed calculus, only your dentist’s office can safely and effectively remove it through professional cleaning.
Gingivitis: A Warning Sign
If plaque and calculus remain on the teeth, they become increasingly harmful to your mouth. The bacteria cause gingivitis, which is an inflammation of the gums, leaving them red, swollen and likely to bleed. On the gum disease spectrum, gingivitis is relatively mild and can be treated with daily brushing and flossing, as well as a regular cleaning at our office.
The Slippery Slope of Periodontitis
If gingivitis is left untreated, it can progress to inflammation around the teeth called periodontitis, which is when gum disease starts to get frightening… Here’s what happens with periodontitis:
The gums pull away from the teeth, resulting in pockets that become infected. Plaque continues to spread and grows beneath the gum line. Next the bone and connective tissue that hold your teeth in place begin to break down, due to the bacterial toxins and the body’s natural response to infection.
If this dire situation goes untreated, your teeth are likely to become loose and need to be removed, because the bones, gums and tissue that once supported them have been irreversibly damaged.
We have good news, though! There’s no need to lose your smile to gum disease. The decision is yours, and we’re here to help you maintain excellent oral health. It’s simple:
1. Brush your teeth twice a day (for two minutes each session) with fluoride toothpaste.
2. Floss once a day, every day, no matter what!
3. Eat a well-balanced diet and avoid excessive sugar, sugary drinks and soda.
4. Come to visit us for your regular checkups and cleanings.