Periodontal disease is a destructive oral health problem that will progress without treatment. Despite being completely preventable, it is a very common issue that dentists see every day. In addition to dental cavities, it is the leading cause for tooth loss. Gum disease is often referred to as the silent disease because symptoms are sometimes unnoticeable especially in the beginning stages.
At every dental examination, Dr. Tu will screen for signs of periodontal disease in an effort to catch it in the beginning stages. Intervening as soon as possible means treatment will be more conservative and effective. Dr. Tu offers effective gum disease treatment to patients from Cedar Rapids, IA.
Developing Periodontal Disease
In most cases, gum disease is caused by a lack of oral care allowing plaque to build up on the teeth. However, teeth grinding, TMJ disorders, tobacco use, pregnancy, menopause, and poor nutrition can also lead to gum disease.
Plaque is a sticky, bacteria filled substance. If it is not regularly removed from your teeth, it will slowly eat away at your gums causing infections in the tissue. The two stages of gum disease include gingivitis and periodontitis.
- Gingivitis takes place in the early stages. Most people do not even realize they have it because the symptoms are minimal. Gingivitis is characterized by red, swollen and irritated gums. In some instances, the gums bleed during brushing or flossing.
- Periodontitis is the advanced stage of gum disease. Here, gums bleed often, puss pockets form, gums are receding and the teeth become loose. Tooth loss should be expected. You will need intense and invasive treatment to get the severe infection under control.
A full list of signs and symptoms of gum disease include:
- Bleeding gums
- Receding gums
- Red, swollen or sore gums
- Sensitive gums
- Loose or wiggly teeth
- Sores or pus between gums and teeth
- Bad breath (halitosis)
- Changes in the fit of dentures
Gum Disease Treatment
- Scaling and Root Planing- This treatment is essentially a deep cleaning of the teeth and gums. It will remove plaque and tartar from the deep pockets that formed along the gum line.
- Antibiotic Therapy- Dr. Tu may prescribe an antibiotic if an infection is present.
- Gum Surgery- If periodontitis is present, Dr. Tu may recommend gum surgery. This will help restore health and function to the gum tissue.
How to Prevent Gum Disease
To avoid gum disease, all you have to do prevent it from developing. Preventive dental care protects your teeth, gums, underlying bone and overall health from serious complications. Prevention includes brushing your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride based toothpaste. You should floss in between your teeth daily to remove food that gets stuck. In addition to this, visiting our Cedar Rapids, IA area dentist office twice a year is very important. Here, we will thoroughly clean your teeth and remove any built-up plaque along the gum line.
Dr. Tu is accepting patients from Cedar Rapids, IA who may be suffering from gum disease. Call Design Dental today at (319) 284-4361 or request an appointment online to get your oral health back on track!