Gum disease is the most prevalent dental problem affecting people of all age groups globally. Periodontitis is the most advanced stage of gum disease that is preceded by gingivitis (early-stage disease). Periodontitis leads to loss of attachment and eventual tooth loss.
Our dentist in Summit, IL, offers comprehensive evaluation and treatment of periodontal disease to improve your oral form, function, and aesthetics.
Understanding periodontal disease
Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a common condition affecting the supporting structures surrounding your teeth, which is the periodontium. This comprises the gums, PDL (periodontal ligament), cementum, and the alveolar bone. Gum disease is the most common cause of tooth loss.
What factors are responsible for periodontal disease?
The buildup of excess plaque is the prime factor for periodontal disease. Plaque is a thin, sticky film that adheres to the tooth surface, which, when not removed properly, can lead to increased bacterial colonization. These microorganisms release harmful toxins that damage the soft tissues and impair your immune system to fight infections.
Certain risk factors can increase your chances of developing periodontal disease, such as:
- Genetic predisposition
- Poor oral hygiene
- Hormonal imbalance as seen during puberty, pregnancy, and menopause
- Unhealthy lifestyle habits like tobacco use, and smoking
- Obesity (being overweight)
- Certain autoimmune diseases like lupus
- Heart or respiratory disease
What are the most classic symptoms of periodontal disease?
The most striking features of periodontal disease are as follows:
- Reddish purple gums
- Swollen and tender gums
- Gums that bleed easily while brushing or flossing
- Halitosis (bad breath)
- Unpleasant or metallic taste
- Receding gums
- Loose teeth
What are the treatment options for periodontal disease?
Treatment for periodontal disease depends on the severity of the condition.
Treatment options include:
- Scaling and root planing
- Professional dental cleaning once every 6 months can prevent plaque formation.
- It also helps to detect early signs of gum disease and halt the disease progression.
- These include oral antibiotics for severe infection or antimicrobial mouth rinse.
- Tissue regeneration
- This treatment encourages the growth of gum tissues through grafting.
- A biocompatible layer or membrane is inserted into the affected area to promote regeneration of the tissues.
- Pocket elimination surgery
- This is a flap surgery that reduces the size of the gingival pocket between the gums and the teeth.
- Dental implants
- Loss of teeth due to periodontal disease can be effectively replaced using dental implants.
- These act as an anchorage for crown placement.
Periodontal disease is common and reversible in the early stages. Seek timely dental help to prevent further deterioration of your oral health.