Periodontal (gum) disease is an infection of the gums and bone that supports the teeth, caused by the bacteria in plaque (the sticky, nearly clear film that constantly forms on your teeth). While seldom painful and frequently free of any obvious signs or symptoms, periodontal disease can progress undetected to the point where the supporting bone is destroyed.
Gum disease is common but it should be taken seriously. Scientists have found a link between gum disease and several other serious health conditions including heart disease, diabetes, preterm delivery, arthritis, and even certain cancers.
Some options for treating periodontal disease that we provide include scaling and root planing (deep cleaning), laser therapy, and/or placing antibiotics (called Arestin) in the deep pockets located in and around the teeth.
Do You Have Periodontal Disease?
Review the following questions to see if you have any gum disease symptoms:
- Do you ever have pain in your mouth?
- Do your gums ever bleed when you brush your teeth or when you eat hard food?
- Have you noticed any spaces developing between your teeth?
- Do your gums feel swollen or tender?
- Have you noticed that your gums are receding (pulling back from your teeth) or your teeth appear longer than before?
- Do you have persistent bad breath?
- Have you noticed pus between your teeth and gums?
- Have you noticed any changes in the way your teeth fit together when you bite?
- Do you develop sores in your mouth?
If you said yes to any of the above questions, you may want to come into our office for a diagnosis. We can tell you whether or not you have periodontal disease and prescribe the right treatment. Periodontal disease has many different stages. We’ll determine the extent of your gum disease and create a treatment plan that fits your unique needs.
Gum disease is a serious condition that progresses over time. Early treatment is critical to great gum health and care. At your hygiene appointments, we’ll check your mouth for signs of gum disease to make sure that your gums and smile are healthy.