Periodontitis, or gum disease as it more commonly known, is a condition that affects almost everyone to some degree throughout their lives. Many people ignore the signs of gum disease, but it can ultimately lead to loss of one, several, or all teeth.
Although children are affected much less than adults, periodontitis is just as serious no matter the age. If you find your gums are bleeding when brushing your teeth, you’ll be glad to know Modern Family Dentists can provide treatment at any stage of gum disease. While prevention through proper dental hygiene is better than cure, it is always best to seek treatment at the earliest possible stage of gum disease.
What is periodontitis?
The early stage of gum disease – marked by bad breath and bleeding gums when brushing – is known as gingivitis, and affects the gum area directly around the teeth. When gingivitis becomes worse, it can develop into periodontitis. This affects the deeper areas of the gums that support and hold the teeth in place.
If left untreated, periodontitis can start to damage the jawbone and eventually lead to tooth loss – either through gums no longer being able to support the teeth, or through a necessary tooth extraction.
What causes periodontitis?
When plaque builds up around teeth from inadequate or lack of teeth care such as brushing and flossing, it can cause bacteria to settle around the teeth and gums. This bacteria eventually invades the outer gums which causes irritation, swelling and bleeding. If left untreated, the bacteria continues to grow and affect the deeper area of the gums.
How do I know if I have periodontitis?
As periodontitis is a late stage of gum disease, you would probably already have a good idea that something was wrong.
If you suffer from any of the following symptoms, schedule a checkup with Modern Family Dentists as soon as possible:
- Bleeding, swollen or tender gums
- Receding gum line
- Significant changes in taste or smell of breath
- Pus or pockets along gums or between teeth
It may be tempting to ignore these symptoms, thinking they will eventually go away. Without proper treatment, periodontitis can lead you you losing your teeth.
How is periodontitis treated?
When you come to Modern Family Dentists for a check up, we will evaluate the severity of your gum disease and provide a personalized treatment plan. This can involve a range of treatments most suitable for your needs such as:
- Plaque removal and tooth cleaning
- Specialist toothpaste
- Specialist mouthwash
How can I prevent periodontitis?
As periodontitis is a later stage of gum disease, it is always best to prevent than to cure. A regular and thorough dental care regime combined with avoiding certain foods can help keep your teeth and gums healthy and pain-free.
Here’s how you can avoid gums disease and ensure good oral health:
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day – once after waking and once before bed. Don’t ‘speed brush’ – spending a few minutes at the sink can avoid unnecessary dental treatment in the future. Make sure you reach every side of your teeth – and don’t forget the very back!
- Floss at least once daily – this is to help remove plaque and tiny bits of food from between your teeth that brushing cannot reach.
- Avoid excess sugary foods – a small occasional treat is fine, but don’t overindulge on candy and soda too often.
- Schedule regular dental checkups – a regular checkup can help spot the signs of gum disease before it’s too late.
If, after brushing, you see pink in the sink, or have swollen or tender gums, make an appointment with Modern Family Dentists LLC sooner rather than later. We can diagnose and treat gum disease at any stage, but the earlier, the better. You’ll love the friendly, professional and attentive service we’ve become famous for in the Kenosha area.