Gum disease (also known as gingivitis), is an infection of the gum/tissues that surround and support the teeth. It’s usually caused by impacted food and improper brushing teeth. Gum disease is usually painless; you may not know it until worsen.
Here are some warning signs that can signal a problem:
- Gums that bleed easily on brushing/flossing
- Red, swollen & tender gums
- Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- Persistent bad breath or bad taste
- Permanent teeth that are loose or separating
Some factors increase the risk of developing gum disease. They are:
- Poor oral hygiene
- Smoking or chewing tobacco
- Crooked teeth that is hard to keep clean.
- An alteration in hormone levels like puberty, menopause, during a woman’s menstrual cycle and while a woman is pregnant.
- Medications, including steroids, certain types of anti-epilepsy drugs, cancer therapy drugs, some calcium channel blockers and oral contraceptives.
Remember: You don’t have to lose teeth because of gum disease. Good dental care at home is essential to help keep periodontal disease from becoming more serious or recurring.
- Brush your teeth twice a day.
- Clean between your teeth daily using Dental flossing
- Eat a balanced diet
- Schedule regular dental visits for a lifetime of healthy smiles.
A professional cleaning is part of oral hygiene and involves the removal of dental plaque & tartar and helps the gums to heal and reattach to the teeth. If plaque is not removed daily by brushing and flossing, it hardens into tartar. If tartar is not removed, leads to gum disease.
Even though a person has good oral hygiene, it is satill important to go to the dentist, ideally every six months, for a complete dental cleaning with an ultrasonic scaler with the intention of preventing cavities (dental caries), gingivitis, and periodontal disease.
Curettage Gingival curettage eliminates bacteria and diseased tissue by removing the soft tissue lining of the periodontal pockets. This technique provides a deeper and more thorough cleaning.
SCALING & ROOT PLANNING
Scaling & Root Planning Using manual and ultrasonic instruments, calculus is probed and removed by a dental professional. Scaling involves scraping plaque from above and below the gum line. Root planning involves smoothing rough surface on the tooth to remove bacteria that may have collected there. Polishing is the last phase in deep cleaning that creates smooth surfaces on the tooth making it harder for bacteria to adhere.
Flap Surgery Periodontal surgery involves separating the gums from the tooth and surrounding bone, deep cleaning and the removal of diseased tissue is then permitted. The shaping and repositioning of the gum, bones and tissue supporting the teeth may also be then performed.
It is possible to have gum disease and have no warning signs/no pain. That is one reason why regular dental checkups and periodontal examinations are very important. Treatment methods depend upon the type of disease and how far the condition has progressed.