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Periodontics

Periodontal gum infections can severely affect teeth and the adjacent teeth as well. It is predominantly caused by the accumulation of bacteria from dental plaque. This is a chronic condition that attacks bone below the gum line where the attachment apparatus of the tooth connects it to the supporting structures.

Diagram of periodontitis
There are certain factors that contribute greatly to developing gum disease:
  • Tobacco
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy and menustration
  • Medications
  • Anti-Convulsants
  • Ill-fitting dentures and bridges

Regular check-ups are vital to make sure periodontitis is treated early because it’s possible to have gum infections without any signs or symptoms. Before you know it you could be at increased risk of losing your teeth.

There are various indicators pointing to the varying degree of gum infections. Symptoms can include red irritated and swollen gums, puss and deep pockets, bleeding gums, shifting and separating teeth, bad breath, persistent metallic taste, mouth sores, changes in the fit of dentures or the way teeth fit together.

A digital rendering of advanced gingivitis

One condition that is the precursor to advanced gum disease is gingivitis. The source of inflammation is the same, accumulation of dental plaque in the mouth. The most common symptom is red and swollen gums with an increase in bleeding but no loss in bone. When left untreated gingivitis can progress to periodontitis.

Prevention is key to treating gingivitis and periodontitis. This means brushing and flossing with a fluoridated toothpaste on a regular basis. Maintaining a proper diet will help also to ensure the proper health of teeth and gums. Sugars allow for the bacterial adhesion to teeth surfaces. Eventually these bacteria will die and their exoskeletons left behind will leave a hard protective covering known as calculus.

A women smiling with her fist to her chin leisurely
Don’t let periodontal disease ruin your smile

Under this covering the bacteria continue to damage teeth and cause bone inflammation leading to periodontitis. Progressive stages in infection can lead to more intensive treatments over time.

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