Gum disease is an infection of the tissues that surround and support your teeth. It is a major cause of tooth loss.
Because gum disease (also know was periodontal disease) is usually painless, you may not know you have it. It is caused by plaque, the sticky film of bacteria that is constantly forming on our teeth.
The warning signs:
- gums that bleed easily
- red, swollen, tender gums
- gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- persistent bad breath or bad taste
- permanent teeth that are loose or separating
- any change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
- any change in the fit of partial dentures
Factors which increase the risk of developing gum disease:
- poor oral hygiene
- smoking or chewing tobacco
- crooked teeth that are hard to keep clean
- some medications
The early stage of gum disease is called gingivitis. If you have gingivitis, your gums may become red, swollen and bleed easily. At this point, the disease is still reversible and can usually be eliminated by a professional cleaning with your dentist and by daily brushing and flossing.
Book in with your dentist if you suspect you have gum disease because the sooner you treat it the better.
Advanced gum disease is called periodontitis. It can lead to the loss of tissue and bone that support the teeth and it may become more severe over time. If it does, your teeth will feel loose and start moving around in your mouth. This is the most common form of periodontitis in adults but can occur at any age. It usually gets worse slowly, but there can be periods of rapid progression.
It is possible to have gum disease and have no warning signs. For this reason, it is vital to attend for regular dental check-ups.
Book your oral health review with us here