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Periodontal Disease: What to Know

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People sometimes make the mistake of skipping their oral care routine when they’re busy or tired. However, they might be endangering the health of their gums. When this happens, there is a possibility that you’ll develop a periodontal infection. Learn more about it here!

What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is also known as periodontitis or gum disease. What you need to know is that not all gum problems progress to gum disease. There’s another dental condition called gingivitis wherein the gums are inflamed. If left untreated, this can get worse and become periodontitis.

If you’re suffering from gingivitis, you’ll likely experience bleeding when brushing your teeth. This happens because of plaque build-up. With periodontitis, pockets are formed as a result of the gum pulling away from the teeth. These pockets can be a breeding ground for bacteria and become infected. Your immune system will do its best to fight the infection. The toxins from bacteria can damage the connective tissue and bone that holds your teeth in place, resulting in tooth loss.

What Causes Periodontal Disease?

The main antagonist that causes gum disease is none other than plaque. It appears as a sticky film where bacteria often breed. However, there are other factors that contribute to it including the following:

  • Bad oral habits: Smoking cigarettes makes it difficult for your body to repair any damaged gum tissues.
  • Hormonal changes: There are certain circumstances that make the gums more susceptible to gum disease including menopause, pregnancy, menstruation, and puberty.
  • Medications: Some prescription medications can take a toll on your oral health. For instance, some of them can reduce the production of saliva, leading to dry mouth. Saliva acts as a shield to protect the inside of your mouth and your teeth from bacteria. Some medications can also trigger abnormal growth of gum tissue.
  • Illnesses: There are health conditions that hinder the immune system’s ability to protect the body from infections. These diseases include cancer, diabetes, and HIV.
  • Family history: When your family has a history of oral health conditions, you are at more risk of developing gingivitis or periodontitis.
  • Poor oral hygiene practices: If someone doesn’t follow the recommended number of times of flossing and brushing each day, the risk of developing gingivitis is higher.

How to Treat Periodontal Disease

“Is periodontal disease curable?”, you might be wondering. The answer is yes. The treatment options for periodontal disease will depend on how much damage needs to be addressed and how well your teeth and gums will respond to the treatment. There are non-surgical and surgical procedures that a dentist might recommend. These include, but are not limited to, the following:

Non-Surgical Treatment Options for Gum Disease

  • Professional Dental Cleaning: This might be an option for you if your gum condition is still in its early stages. During your regular appointment, your dentist will do this to remove any plaque and tartar eating away at your gums and teeth.
  • Scaling and Root Planing: This is a much more extensive cleaning wherein plaque and tartar are scaled away. You will have to be injected with a local anesthetic so you won’t feel any discomfort during the procedure.

Surgical Treatment Options for Gum Disease

  • Bone Grafts: If gum disease is in the late stages and the bones holding your teeth in place are already affected, your dentist might recommend this procedure. A synthetic bone, donated bone, or your own bone can be used to replace the affected bones.
  • Flap Surgery: With this procedure, your gums will be lifted to deep clean the tartar hiding away. After that, your gums will be placed back in their original position to fit around your teeth perfectly. This minimizes the risk of bacteria growing in-between the teeth and gums.

If you are wondering about how to reverse periodontal disease naturally, there might not be a way to do this. Only a professional intervention can help manage gum disease if it’s already too late. However, there are things you can do to prevent gingivitis from progressing to periodontitis such as brushing your teeth, using an antibacterial mouthwash, and avoiding sugary foods.

Are you looking for the finest dentist in South Pasadena, FL? We, at Century Dental, are well-equipped to address your concerns with periodontal disease. Book an appointment now and we’ll see what we can do! See you!

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