Signs and Symptoms of Periodontal Disease
Patients should be aware of the symptoms of periodontal disease so that they’ll know when it’s time to seek treatment from a periodontist.
Gum disease occurs when toxins released by plaque, the sticky film that builds up on the teeth and along the gumline, irritate the gum tissue.
The first warning sign of gum disease is red, swollen gums, which typically indicate the mildest form of gum disease, gingivitis. Patients who have gingivitis usually respond well to standard prophylaxis, which is the formal name for a professional dental cleaning.
Gums that bleed during brushing and flossing are also problematic. Gingivitis can result in minor bleeding, but if it’s a major issue, the disease may be advancing.
Other indicators of more advanced gum disease, such as periodontitis, warrant a trip to the periodontist. When the gums have begun to recede, making the teeth appear longer, a more intensive intervention may be needed. Similarly, when pockets begin to develop in the gums, a specialized treatment is appropriate.
A periodontist may be able to treat periodontal disease with a deep cleaning technique known as scaling and root planing. In some cases, the gums can recede so extensively that gum graft surgery may be required to address the situation.
Ultimately, periodontal disease can result in tooth and bone loss if action is not taken. Certain people may be more prone to developing periodontal disease, including diabetics and pregnant women. People from those groups should be hypervigilant in monitoring themselves for signs of gum disease.
If you have periodontal disease and get effective treatment for it, you will still need to work to prevent a relapse. Maintain a strict oral hygiene routine at home, brushing for a full two minutes twice each day and flossing each day using proper technique.
Because of all of the negative consequences that can arise from periodontal disease, it’s important to know what symptoms indicate that you have the condition and when to seek care for it.
To learn more and to schedule your consultation, contact the Pittsburgh office of Dr. Garry J. Bloch today.