When ensuring that you practice good oral hygiene, there are a few potential problems that you should always be aware of so you can watch for the signs of them. One of those problems is gum disease.
Gum disease is a serious infection that can have terrible consequences on your oral help. However, some gum disease treatments can help prevent further damage, avoid dental emergencies, and alleviate some symptoms.
Keep reading to learn what gum disease is and discover your Sacramento gum disease treatment options.
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease, also known as periodontitis, is a serious bacterial infection that damages the gum tissue. Gum disease develops when bacteria below the gumline compromise the attachment between the gum and your tooth.
Gum disease is more relevant than many people may think. According to the CDC, about 43% of adults over the age of 30 have some form of gum disease.
Many things can cause gum disease. Here are a few of the most common causes of this disease:
Poor Oral Hygiene
Poor oral hygiene is one of the most common causes of gum disease.
Plaque remaining on the teeth can lead to gum infections and is a doorway through which bacteria can enter your bloodstream and infect other body parts through the gum line.
Smoking and Use of Tobacco
Smoking and tobacco mask signs of gum disease, increasing your chance of developing advanced disease without knowing it. It also limits treatment success.
There are many side effects to pregnancy; unfortunately, gum disease is one of them. This is due to the hormonal changes that happen throughout pregnancy, which make your gums more sensitive to bacteria.
Make sure you know your medication’s potential side effects before you take it.
Some drugs, such as birth control pills, antidepressants, and heart, seizure, and cancer medications, may make your gums more sensitive to bacteria.
Clenching or Grinding Your Teeth
You’re at higher risk for gum disease if you clench or grind your teeth. These acts put extra force on the surrounding tissue and may speed up the advancement of the disease.
Faulty or Aging Dental Work
Often, dental work needs to be upgraded periodically to avoid it causing damage to your teeth. Faulty dental work will increase nooks and crannies for bacteria to hang out and do damage.
Illness, Stress, and Poor Diet
Finally, taking care of your overall health is essential to prevent gum disease. Poor health makes it harder for your body to fight infection.
Gum disease is a chronic, painless bacterial infection that most people don’t even know they have if they don’t visit the dentist every six months or as recommended. In fact, gum disease is even contagious. Unfortunately, many people don’t know they even have it until they go for their dental check-up. By this point, the disease could have done some serious damage.
Consequences of Gum Disease
Without treatment, severe gum disease can destroy the supporting bone, leading to loose teeth and, even worse, tooth loss, naturally or through a necessary extraction.
Gum disease provides an open portal for bacteria to enter your body. It is also transmissible from person to person via saliva.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for gum disease and no ability to reverse the bone loss caused by severe gum disease once it is well established. That said, if the problem is identified early enough, the advancement of the disease may be slowed or entirely stopped.
Signs of Gum Disease
Considering how serious gum disease is, you should always be aware of the signs and look out for them so that you can address the issue as soon as possible.
To start, here are some of the signs of healthy gums:
- Pink, firm, attached gums, no pain, no bleeding
- Probing depths less than or equal to 3mm
- No odor on the floss after it has been passed through the teeth
In contrast, here’s what gums affected by gum disease could look like:
- Chronic bad breath
- Loose and shifting teeth
- Severe gum recession
- Red, bleeding, or swollen gums
- Itching or painful gums
- Bleeding on probing and depth pocket readings greater than 3mm
What Is Gum Disease Treatment?
Gum disease is likely the most common chronic infection in our body. However, there are gum disease treatments that can minimize the damage and stop it from progressing.
There are several different gum disease treatments that your dentist may recommend. The first type of treatment may be a simple deep cleaning. This involves scaling and root planing. During this process, you’ll be given local anesthesia to numb your gums and prevent any pain. Regular dental cleanings with a dental hygienist to maintain gum tissue health after a deep cleaning can also help.
Your dentist may also prescribe antibiotics, special medicated mouth rinses, or antibacterial toothpaste to fight the infection or place a topical antibiotic underneath your gums to target the affected area.
In severe cases, you may need gum surgery to fix the problem. Surgical treatment should be the last option, but it can be long, painful, and invasive. There are modern options for treatment, such as laser assisted periodontal therapy, which can save you from expensive and painful gum surgery.
Sacramento Gum Disease Treatment Options
You shouldn’t ignore gum disease, or it might get worse. If you suspect that you have gum disease, it’s essential to address the problem as soon as possible. If you’re looking for gum disease treatment in Sacramento, you have some options, including Arden Dentistry.
Call our Sacramento dental office today at 916-488-1933 or fill out our form to book an appointment.