Signs of Gum Disease
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease or periodontitis, is a progressive oral affliction and the leading cause of tooth loss in the US and the entire developed world. Gum disease happens when the toxins found in plague start to irritate or inflame the gum tissue, also known as gingiva. This leads to a bacterial infection commonly known as gingivitis and can eventually result in the deterioration of the gum tissue and even the underlying bone. Without treatment, gum disease can result in loose teeth and ultimately tooth loss.
Common Signs and Symptoms of Gum Disease
Regular dental checkups (and proper, thorough, oral hygiene) are exceptionally important when it comes to preventing gum disease. It's important to note that it's possible for gum disease to progress without any signs or symptoms, including pain. We encourage you to call our Hillsboro, OR office at (971) 708-1608 to schedule an appointment as soon as possible if you have any of the following signs or symptoms:
Bleeding during normal, everyday activities such as brushing, flossing, or eating is one of the most common signs of an infection in your gums. The toxins in plague give rise to a bacterial infection, which them makes the irritated gum tissue prone to bleeding.
Pain, Redness, or Swelling
If your gums are swollen, red, or painful without an obvious reason, these may be signs of periodontal infection. It's important to stop the infection as soon as possible. Untreated gum infections can spread and affect the jaw bone. It's also necessary to treat the infection before it has a chance to enter the bloodstream where it can spread to other areas of the body.
Periodontal disease can cause your gums to recede. Toxins produced by the bacteria in gum disease can destroy supporting tissue and bones, and make your teeth look longer and your smile more "toothy" than it did previously.
Bad Breath or "Halitosis"
While bad breath can happen to anyone, the chronic bad breath may also be caused by old food particles which sit between the teeth and underneath the gum line. Deeper gum pockets with stuck food particles house more bacteria, which can lead to foul odors and eventually gum disease.
Loose Teeth or Change in Bite Pattern
Loose or shifting teeth can be a sign of rapidly progressing gum disease. As the bone tissue deteriorates, teeth that used to be firmly secured in the jawbone become loose and can become prone to shifting.
One of the most definitive signs of progressing gum disease is pus oozing from between the teeth. The pus results from your body trying to fight the bacterial infection.
Treatment of Gum Disease
Gum disease must be stopped from progressing before it causes further damage to your gum tissues and jawbone. If Jefferson Call, DMD discovers evidence of gum disease during one of your visits, there are several possible treatments available. We will be happy to assist you in determining which is right for your smile.