Gum disease is a serious dental issue. Basically, the condition involves infection of the gum tissues. Names you may hear associated with the condition are gingivitis, periodontitis and periodontal disease. The main cause is plaque, which sticks to the teeth and hardens. Poor brushing and flossing habits are usually what lead to plaque buildup. There are various symptoms that can be quite serious in the more severe cases. We warmly invite you to learn more about the symptoms of gum disease.
Gum Disease Causes
Bacteria in our mouth can build up and become hard. That’s what plaque is – hardened bacteria. It can be tricky to get rid of, which is why thorough and regular brushing and flossing are so essential. When plaque becomes so hard that it can’t be removed by brushing, it is then known as tartar. Only a professional can remove tartar from your teeth. Plaque and tartar that remain hardened in your mouth contribute to the breakdown of your gums, leading to periodontitis. Some lifestyle habits, health issues and medications can put you more at risk.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
Bleeding when brushing is usually one of the first indications of periodontal disease. Your gums might also be red, swollen or tender. If your teeth look longer because your gums are pulling away from them, or receding, this is a likely sign of gum disease. Painful chewing and sensitive teeth are also signs for concern. Bad breath is common. Advanced cases may have symptoms like loose teeth, mouth sores, pus between the teeth or a shift in your bite.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Routine exams are your best chance of catching gum disease early. A dental professional can give you an official diagnosis. Dental X-rays and a measuring device can be used to determine whether periodontitis is present. The most important thing is to keep the buildup of plaque and tartar away. You can do this with proper brushing and flossing at home on a regular basis and maintaining routine dental exams. Changes in lifestyle habits like quitting smoking may also be recommended.
If you suspect that you might have gum disease, let our team at Redmond Orthodontics point you in the right direction. Contact us today to book an appointment in Redmond and learn more about your treatment options.