Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, is a serious condition caused by improper or poor oral hygiene. This infection of the gums occurs when plaque builds up on your teeth and hardens. If the plaque doesn’t get removed, it can cause damage to your gums and jaws and even cause tooth loss.
In this article, our team at SPA Dental Group, located in New York City and Washington DC, has the expertise to give guidance on how to avoid gum disease and also how to treat it.
Symptoms of gum disease
It’s essential to pay attention to the health of your teeth and gums. Signs of gum disease include:
- Swollen, red gums
- Gums that bleed easily
- Persistent bad breath
- Loose permanent teeth
- Gums pulling away from your teeth
If you notice any of the above issues, book an appointment with our team as soon as possible to get the oral care you need.
Causes of gum disease
Plaque is a sticky film that mostly develops due to bacteria. When it forms on your teeth, and you leave it untreated, complications of periodontitis occur.
Here are its main causes:
Plaque can form from eating starches and sugars that interact with bacteria in your mouth. Brushing twice a day and flossing daily can remove plaque.
When plaque stays on your teeth, it turns into a hardened substance called tartar. Tartar can only be removed professionally at our practice, which is why it’s essential to brush and floss daily so it can’t form.
If your gums begin to show signs of irritation and inflammation, you might be experiencing the first stage of gum disease called gingivitis. This condition can be reversed if you start practicing proper oral hygiene and schedule recommended professional cleanings.
If you have ongoing swelling in your gums, pockets can develop between your gums and teeth, which can become filled with bacteria, plaque, and tartar. Once infection sets in, you have periodontitis, which has significant consequences.
When you come in for an oral health evaluation, we guide you on how to avoid gum disease.
What happens if you don’t treat gum disease
When you don’t treat gum disease and it turns into periodontitis, your gums pull away from your teeth. That causes bone and tissue loss, which can cause your teeth to loosen and even fall out.
Not only does gum disease have negative effects on your oral health, but it can also put a significant strain on your immune system, leaving you susceptible to other health complications.
Avoiding gum disease
When it comes to preventing gum disease, we recommend optimal oral hygiene and routine visits to our practice for cleanings every 6-12 months. Making preventive care part of your yearly checkups can give you the best oral health possible.
After assessing your oral health, we may determine that you need more frequent visits. The bottom line is we help monitor the condition of your teeth and gums so you continue to experience healthy outcomes.
To prevent gum disease or have an assessment of your oral health, call our friendly office staff in New York City or Washington, DC, today to book an appointment. You can also check appointment availability online.