Gum disease, known formally as periodontal disease, is essentially a bacterial infection of the bone and tissue surrounding the teeth. Bacterium with names like Porphyromonas gingivalis, Tennerella forsythia and Treponema denticola are often responsible for gum disease. As gum disease progresses, the bone level around the teeth decreases and teeth can eventually become loose. Gum disease is often the cause of gum pain, bad breathe, pus coming from the gums, bleeding of the gums, etc.
Gum disease is often times something that people aren’t aware they have. Some people are more prone to develop gum disease due to genetic factors, systemic diseases, etc. For example, people with diabetes are at higher risk for developing oral infections e.g. gum disease. Due to diabetes reducing the body’s resistance to infection, gum disease in diabetic patients tends to be more severe compared to patients who do not have diabetes. People who smoke are also more susceptible to developing gum disease. Smoking weakens the immune system and with a weakened immune system infections have an easier time setting in.
In order to arrest or stop the progression of gum disease, it is absolutely necessary that patients with gum disease come in for periodontal therapy, also referred to as deep cleanings, and regular maintenance visits. We believe in holding on to natural teeth for as long as possible, which makes regular appointments very important for patients with gum disease.
All adults are evaluated for gum disease when they receive a Comprehensive Exam in our office.
Do you think that you may have gum disease? Give our office a call. We are happy to assist