Periodontitis or gum disease is a severe gum infection that damages the soft tissue and the supporting bones of your teeth. It can cause teeth to lose their strength and ultimately cause tooth loss.
Symptoms of periodontitis include:
- Swollen or puffy gums
- Tender gums
- Bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- Pain while chewing
- Dusky red, bright red, or purplish gums
- Traces of blood on the toothbrush after brushing
- Pus between teeth and gums
- Loose or missing teeth
- Space formation between teeth
- Changes in teeth positioning
- Gums recede from the teeth and make your teeth appear more pronounced.
The process of developing periodontitis begins with plaque buildup. If not treated, it leads to severe gum disease.
- When sugars and starch in your diet interact with the mouth bacteria, plaque develops over your tooth.
- If plaque stays on your teeth for a long duration, it becomes hard under the gumline and forms tartar. The longer tartar and plaque persist on your tooth, the more damage they'll cause. You wouldn't be able to get rid of tartar simply by brushing and flossing alone. It requires professional cleaning.
- Gingivitis is one of the mildest forms of gum disease that can cause inflammation and irritation of the gum tissue lying around the teeth' root.
- Gum inflammation may cause periodontitis, eventually leading to pockets forming between your teeth and gums filled with tartar, plaque, and bacteria. Over time, these pockets get deeper and house more bacteria. In addition, chronic inflammation can place a strain on the immune system.
The bacteria that cause periodontitis usually enter the bloodstream through the gum tissue and affect other organs of your body. In particular, it is associated with respiratory diseases and rheumatoid arthritis, coronary artery diseases, and difficulties controlling blood sugar levels in diabetes. Factors that may increase chances of developing periodontitis include:
- Poor oral health habits
- Chewing or smoking tobacco
- Hormonal fluctuations related to menopause and pregnancy
- Use of recreational drugs, like marijuana
- Inadequate nutrition, including vitamin C deficiency
- Certain medications can cause dry mouth or gums
- Certain conditions, like rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, Crohn's disease
- Infections that reduce immunity, like leukemia, HIV / AIDS, and treatment for cancer
The best method to avoid periodontitis is to adhere to oral hygiene that you begin at an early age and continue to practice throughout your life.
Good dental hygiene: Brush your teeth for 2 minutes twice a day and floss at least once per day.
Regular visits to the dentist: See your dental hygienist regularly for cleanings, typically every six months.
Please reach out to our dental practice in Anaheim Hills, CA, to have a consultation with our dentist. Please call us at (714) 974-0949 or schedule an online consultation, and we'll guide you further.