Gum Infection and Beyond – What Is Periodontal Disease?

periodontal disease Garner, NC

Gum issues such as periodontal disease can lead to serious dental problems for patients. A dentist can address the early stages of gum disease to minimize the damage that occurs and prevent any lasting consequences. There are a variety of treatments that can help patients suffering from bacterial gum issues. Recognizing the indicators of gum infection and knowing when to see a dentist is a good way for patients to protect their teeth. 

What is gum infection?

Gum infection is characterized by inflammation, pain and sensitivity of patients' gums. These symptoms are due to bacteria establishing themselves in plaque buildup on the teeth. Gum disease can cause irritation and frequent bleeding of the gums, especially during brushing. There are preventative measures patients can take to avoid infection, such as regular brushing and flossing, but sometimes underlying health conditions give individuals a predisposition for gum issues.

Patients should make their dentist aware of any pre-existing conditions or habits that may mean an increased chance of periodontal disease. Family history of gingivitis or periodontal disease, as well as behaviors such as smoking or not brushing regularly, can make an individual more likely to develop gum issues. 

Can gum infection lead to periodontal disease? 

The bacteria that lead to periodontal disease are the same that cause most gum infections. Less severe infections in an early stage are referred to as gingivitis. While gingivitis is reversible, it can eventually cause complications leading to periodontal disease. If patients suspect gum infection, they should go to a dentist for treatment to help catch the infection as early as possible. 

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is a later stage of gum infection in which the damage caused to the gums and teeth goes beyond that of gingivitis. It may lead to the affected person suffering permanent damage to the teeth and gums. This can include severe receding of the gums, which may lead to tooth loss. Taking preventative measures and following any instructions or suggestions for lifestyle changes given by a dentist is important for a patient trying to avoid these more serious consequences. 

What is the treatment for gum infection and periodontal disease?

Treatment for gum disease involves promoting the gums to heal by undergoing professional deep cleanings such as root planning and scaling. The goal of these procedures is to prevent the gums from receding away from the teeth and to slow down or stop any other forms of deterioration that may be occurring. In serious cases, surgical procedures may be necessary to restore damaged bone and tissue or reduce pockets that can be formed between the teeth and gums as a result of infection. 

Maintaining healthy gums

Proper dental hygiene and regular visits to a dentist for cleaning are good preventative habits regardless of whether a patient is suffering from gum infection. Diagnosing such oral health issues early can help resolve them more successfully. Gingivitis is a reversible condition, and even periodontal disease can be treated with the help of a dentist. 

Request an appointment here: https://drcashleymannandassociates.com or call Charles Ashley Mann, DDS & Associates at (919) 838-7388 for an appointment in our Garner office.

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