Periodontal disease affects your gums, presenting itself in many ways depending on the level of severity. Generally, periodontal disease occurs when plaque builds up on your teeth, eventually developing into tartar. This causes the inner-layer of gum and bone to pull away from the tooth, creating a pocket. This pocket then fills with the debris of the things you eat and drink, eventually becoming infected. As your enzymes try to fight off the infection, toxins are produced that will break down the bone and tissue that hold your teeth in place. Because this disease is often painless, many people who suffer from it don’t realize it until it’s too late. In the early stages, known as gingivitis, periodontal disease is still fixable with a professional tooth cleaning coupled with diligent at-home dental care, including brushing twice a day and flossing daily. It is important that you know what to look out for so that you can catch the signs before it’s too late. Contact us immediately if you experience:
- Gums that are tender, red and/or swollen
- Frequent or easily bleeding of gums
- Seemingly incurable bad breath or bad taste in your mouth
- Gums pulling away from the tooth
- Loose permanent teeth
- Changes in your bite
- Changes in the fit of permanent dentures
Types of Periodontal Disease
“Periodontal disease” is an umbrella term that describes a range of gum diseases of different severities. Periodontal disease can present itself in many forms, so it is important that you know what to look out for. Here are the different types of periodontal disease:
- Gingivitis – This is an early stage of periodontal disease, so it is significantly milder than later stages. There isn’t typically much discomfort felt at this stage, which is why it is important to look out for warning signs like red, swollen and/or bleeding gums. At this point, the disease is reversable, so be sure to speak to us if you notice any of the aforementioned symptoms. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
- Chronic Periodontitis – The most common form of periodontal disease, chronic periodontitis presents itself through inflammation in the gums and bone loss. Generally, this most commonly occurs in adults, but it can develop at any age.
- Aggressive Periodontitis – This disease generally presents itself in patients who have no other health problems. Typically running in families, people who suffer from this condition often experience rapid bone destruction and loss of attachment between the gums and the teeth.
- Manifestation of Systemic Diseases Through Periodontitis – Systemic diseases, like heart disease, stroke and lung disease, are often linked to poor gum health. Therefore, systemic diseases sometimes physically manifest as periodontitis.
- Necrotizing Periodontal Disease – This is an infection that causes the death of cells in the gums, periodontal ligament and alveolar bone. Conditions like HIV are usually the cause of this kind of necrosis.
If you believe you or somebody you love may have signs of any of the periodontal diseases listed above, set up an appointment with us today.