Periodontal, or gum, disease is an infection of the gums around the teeth.
Caused by a buildup of plaque on the teeth, gum disease is often pain free and patients don’t even know they have it. That is why it’s one of the leading causes of tooth loss in adults.
Periodontal disease has two stages:
These factors can increase your chance of developing gum disease:
Symptoms of periodontal disease include:
Use of tobacco products
Red, swollen, tender gums
Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
Persistent bad breath or bad taste
Pus between your teeth and gums
Loose or separating permanent teeth
Change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
Change in the fit of partial dentures
Typical periodontal disease treatments include:
At-home periodontal trays, and scaling and root planning (deep cleaning)
Periodontal surgery and laser gum surgery
Brushing and flossing regularly go a long way to maintaining good oral health and preventing problems like gum disease. And you should be sure to visit your dentist twice a year.
A balanced diet also offers great advantages for oral health and disease prevention.