PERIODONTAL DISEASE

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Periodontal disease what is it and why does it happen.  Periodontal disease is an infection and inflammation of the gums that can move into the bone, our gums and bone are the structure that supports our teeth.  There is a phase before it moves into periodontal disease, it’s called gingivitis.  The first signs of gingivitis are red swollen gums and bleeding when brushing, this would be the time to make a dental cleaning appointment so it does not turn into periodontitis, this is when the gums will start to pull away from the tooth, which can cause teeth to become loose or even fall out.

“The CDC’s most recent report provided the following data related to prevalence of periodontitis in the United States:

  • 47.2% of adults aged 30 years old and older have some form of periodontal disease.
  • Periodontal disease increases with age, 70.1% of adults 65 years and older have periodontal disease.
  • 3 million people per year are diagnosed with periodontal disease.
  • This condition is more common in men than women (56.4% vs 38.4%)”

CAUSES:

Bacteria is the cause of periodontal disease, it infects the tissue/gums around the tooth, which leads to inflammation.  When bacteria stays on the teeth long term it causes plaque to form and when plaque stays on the teeth it hardens and turns into tartar.  Tarter can build up not just on the teeth but can form below the gum line. Once tarter has formed a dentist is the only one who can remove it and stop the progression of periodontal disease.

WARNING SIGNS:

  • Bad breath
  • Swollen gums
  • Tender or bleeding gums
  • Painful chewing
  • Loose teeth
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • Changes to your bite

RISK FACTORS:

  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Poor oral hygiene
  • Stress
  • Heredity
  • Crooked teeth
  • Fillings that have become defective
  • Taking medications that dry out the mouth
  • Brides that no longer fit properly
  • Female hormones

PREVENTION & TREATMENT:

The most successful prevention of periodontal disease is oral hygiene and regular dental cleanings. If you are already suffering from periodontal disease it can still be treated successfully by seeing a dentist every 3 to 4 months instead of the every 6 months.  Those treatments can consist of deep cleanings, medication and sometimes surgery.  But again, if you brush your teeth in the morning and evening, floss daily, get your teeth cleaned every 6 months it will lessen the chances of periodontal disease.  Our dental hygiene is as important as our everyday hygiene.

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