Gum Disease (AKA Periodontal disease / Periodontitis)

What is gum disease (Periodontitis)?

Gum disease is an infectious disease of the gums, which if left untreated, will result in tooth loss.

What are the main causes of gum disease?

  1. Poor oral hygiene is considered one of the main causes of periodontal disease. Failure to brush at least twice per day and floss at least once a day will result in bacterial to attach teeth. Once attached, it's very difficult to remove these bacteria. A common term for referring to these bacteria is plaque. Eventually, bacteria will migrate underneath the gums and will result in their inflammation (gingivitis) and bleeding. If these bacterial are not professionally removed by your dentist or dental hygienist, they will result in infection of the gums, which could then spread to the underlying jaw bone and damage it. Significant bone loss around teeth will result in loosening of the teeth. Once teeth become extremely mobile, they cannot be stabilized. Subsequently, individuals with severe stages of gum disease will often lose multiple teeth.
  2. Smoking results in gum disease by reducing blood flow to the gums. With reduced blood flow, the gums will not receive sufficient oxygen and nutrients, which will in turn triggers the disease process.
  3. Diabetes increases the risk of gum disease.

Is gum disease painful?

Gum disease is often not painful in its early stages. The earliest sign of gum disease is usually swelling and bleeding of the gums. However, left untreated, the swelling becomes more severe, which will eventually trigger pain and discomfort of the gums.

What are some of the signs of gum disease?

  1. Swollen gums
  2. Bleeding gums
  3. Pain and discomfort of gums
  4. Bad breath (resulting from the underlying infection of the gums).

How can gum disease be treated?

Gum disease is treated by a procedure known as Scaling & Root Planing (SRP), which is commonly referred to as "Deep Cleaning" as well. During this procedure, the dentist or the hygienist will numb of the gums, to ensure patient is comfortable, and will then remove the bacteria that have invaded the space underneath the gum. Removal of the bacteria will result in healing of the gums. It important to treat gum disease in its early stages, when significant damage has not been done to the underlying jaw bone. This will minimize the risk of tooth loss.

Can bone loss triggered by periodontal disease be reversed?

Unfortunately, the bone loss cannot be reserved. However, treating gum disease via SRP will stop further bone loss. Keep in mind that if bone loss is significant, the dentist may recommend the patient to see a gum specialist (AKA Periodontist), after completion of SRP. There are various surgical approaches that the specialist can use to repair the bone that has been damaged by the disease process.

Can gum disease reoccur, once it is treated?

Yes! Without good oral hygiene, in absence of regular follow up cleanings, and by continuing to smoke, the patient is at high risk of recurrne of gum disease. This risk is even higher in patients with diabetes.

If you suspect that you may have gum disease, it's crucial to take action. Dr. Naman Zia Ebrahimi is here to guide you through the process. Following a thorough examination of your oral health, Dr. Ebrahimi will provide you with expert advice and recommend the most suitable treatment option tailored to your specific needs. 

Your journey towards improved oral health and well-being begins with a simple step – contacting us. Reach out to Naman Zia Ebrahimi, DMD today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ebrahimi and take the first stride towards a healthier, pain-free smile.

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