Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a common condition. The good news is that if it’s caught in the early stages, gum disease is reversible. If it’s in the later stages, called periodontitis, is has already begun to damage the gums and possibly destroy the jawbone. However, it’s still highly treatable.
The staff at Kirchner Dental in Jeffersonville, IN, is dedicated to helping you maintain the health of your gums. If you notice any signs of gum disease, don’t hesitate to call our office and set up an appointment.
The symptoms of gum disease include but are not limited to:
- Red, swollen, and tender gums
- Bleeding when brushing or flossing
- Gums that are pulling away from the teeth
- Persistent bad breath
If you notice any of these symptoms, please contact the team at Kirchner Dental as soon as possible to seek treatment.
Gum disease is often silent, meaning there may be no symptoms until the disease is advanced. That’s why we urge regular, routine dental exams. We want to find and correct issues before they become serious problems.
Gum disease is caused by a buildup of bacteria in the mouth. This buildup can be due to poor dental hygiene, but it can also be caused by genetic conditions such as teeth misalignment and diabetes.
Gum disease is not something you want to leave untreated. If it’s ignored, it can lead to a lot of other problems like jawbone deterioration and tooth loss. Fixing those kinds of issues will be more time-consuming and expensive.
There is also a connection between gum disease and heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure among other things.
Gingivitis is the mildest form of gum disease. Your gums may be red, swollen, and prone to bleeding. But there’s also a chance that your gums may not be painful at this stage. It’s important that you seek care for them the earliest you can. Gingivitis is reversible.
Periodontitis develops when you leave gum disease untreated. Periodontitis is a much more serious situation with added complications. The plaque that forms on your teeth can spread and grow below your gumline. The bacteria in plaque produces toxins that irritate the gums.
Your gums will become painful and inflamed. Your gums will separate from the teeth, forming pockets. As the disease progresses, those pockets become infected and deepen. Eventually, your gum tissue and the bone underneath can break down.
In the end, teeth become loose and may have to be removed.
Preventing Gum Disease
It’s much easier (and less expensive) to do what you have to do to keep gum disease from happening in the first place than it is to treat it after it has happened.
To help prevent gum disease, here are some steps to follow:
- Brush your teeth twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste. It’s best to use a toothbrush with softer bristles because hard bristles can damage the gumline. When brushing, hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums. Move the brush back and forth in short strokes. Be sure to brush both the inner and outer surfaces of your teeth.
- Floss every day.
- Maintain a healthy diet. Starchy or sugary foods can feed the bacteria that causes plaque on your teeth. Follow a good diet with fiber-rich fruits and vegetables.
- Maintain regular dental appointments (every six months).
Gum Disease Treatment
Come to Kirchner Dental as soon as you notice there is a problem. That way you can help us work to prevent bone deterioration and tooth loss from happening to you.
We can do two different things to treat gum disease:
Routine Cleanings – Routine cleaning might be all you’ll need if your gum disease is in the early stages. You should schedule and keep regular visits to your dentist in order to catch the gum disease as early as possible.
Deep Cleaning – If the gum disease is more advanced, we recommend deep cleaning procedures known as scaling and root planing. This process removes bacteria and buildup from underneath your gums. The procedure itself is simple and painless and is typically effective for mild or moderate cases of gum disease.
Make An Appointment
Don’t wait until your gum issues become too advanced. Schedule an appointment at Kirchner Dental in Jeffersonville, IN by calling 812-406-0914. You can also use our online form to contact us. We want to help you keep your healthy smile!