What is Periodontal Disease (Gum Disease)?
Gum disease is typically, but not exclusively, an inherited condition caused by the build-up of plaque and resulting in the loss of bone support around the teeth. The term gum disease is somewhat misleading because it implies that only the gums are affected. In truth, this is a disease of the bone.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease is caused by the buildup of bacteria (plaque) on and around the teeth. Certain types of bacteria within this plaque cause an aggressive immune response in the gums.
Why should I treat it?
Gum disease is a progressive disease and, if left untreated, will eventually result in tooth loss.
If you have gum disease, you may experience:
- Bad breath
- Bleeding gums
- Loose teeth
- Temperature sensitivity.
What other health issues can gum disease cause?
Gum disease has been linked to heart disease, heart attacks and strokes. It has also been shown to contribute to diabetes and preterm-low birth weight babies.
How do you treat gum disease?
There are several treatments available but most are used in combination with either non-surgical (deep cleaning) or surgical therapies. After a diagnosis of gum disease most patients receive a deep cleaning. If residual disease is still present after the deep cleaning, surgical therapy is often recommended. With treatment, regular cleanings and proper home care, most patients experience decades or even permanent inactivity of the disease.