Signs of Gum Disease and How to Treat It

If you notice blood while brushing recently, you may be experiencing the initial signs of gum disease. The early stage is called gingivitis. In this case, only the gums are affected. If left untreated, the infection will worsen into a more serious form of the disease called periodontitis. Gum disease has been linked to health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, which means you need to be aware of the symptoms and treat the condition promptly.

Signs of Gum Disease

The following are symptoms of periodontal disease:

Red, swollen, and inflamed gum: This is the first sign that something is wrong. Gum disease is first noticed as inflammation on the gums. The gums may also bleed easily or feel painful when you brush or floss.

Bad breath: Millions of bacteria have their home in the oral cavity. They thrive on plaques, which are mostly caused by food debris in the mouth. The bacteria produce toxins that can cause gum irritation and create an unpleasant smell. Usually, foul odor only happens during the advanced stages of the disease.

Receding gums: If the teeth appear longer than before, it does not necessarily mean they are growing – your gums are receding. When the bone starts to deteriorate, the gum starts breaking away gradually from the tooth, creating a pocket.

Teeth sensitivity: If hot or cold drinks make you wince in pain, it could be a sign that something is wrong. These symptoms are often accompanied by receding gums. Shrinking gums exposes the sensitive part (the dentin) of the tooth.

Loose or shifting teeth: Advanced gum disease damages the tissues supporting the teeth and cause the teeth to loosen or move. The disease could also change your teeth’s alignment.

Treatment

The primary aim is to curb the infection. The dentist will examine the tissues affected to determine how to start treatment.

Deep cleaning: The first stage of gum disease treatment is thorough, meticulous cleaning. Deep cleaning is done on the teeth and gums using special dental tools. A form of cleaning is called scaling, which entails cleaning off the tartar from the gums and teeth. Root planing is another form, which involves smoothening the rough surfaces of the teeth. This cleaning encourages gum reattachment. The two cleanings may require multiple visits to the dentist.

Medications: Although meds and cream cannot cure gum disease, the dentist may recommend them as part of the treatment. The options include antibiotic gel, antiseptic chip, enzyme suppressant, and oral antibiotics.

Surgery: If a deep cleaning does not solve the problem, a more invasive approach may be necessary. The dentist may suggest gum graft surgery, which entails removing tissue from another part of the oral cavity to protect exposed tooth root and prevent further bone or teeth loss. Another option is a flap surgery, which entails lifting the gums to reach the tartar deep in the gum line.

Antimicrobial mouthwash can also help to curtail the presence of bacteria. You can get it over the counter or as a prescription.

Final note

Once you notice any of the signs of gum disease mentioned above, contact your dentist immediately for treatment.

Request an appointment here: https://www.abcburbankdentist.com or call ABC Dental Group at (818) 578-2335 for an appointment in our Burbank office.

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