Gum Disease


woman receiving dental treatment at Raptou Family Dental Taking care of your mouth is essential for keeping it happy and healthy. The American Dental Association recommends that you brush your teeth twice a day and floss at least once a day. In addition to these daily habits, it is also recommended that you have your teeth professionally cleaned and examined every 6 months. Ignoring these habits, even every once in a while, can greatly increase your chances of developing serious complications, including gum disease. If you do develop gum disease, Raptou Family Dental can help.

What is Gum Disease?


Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a condition that results from a bacterial infection in your mouth. Plaque and bacteria, both of which accumulate on the surfaces of your teeth, irritate your sensitive gum tissue. This irritation triggers an inflammatory response from your immune system, causing the tissue to swell.

Over time, the swollen tissue begins to pull away from your teeth, leading to the formation of pockets, or periodontal pockets. Bacteria begin to accumulate in these pockets, continuing to irritate your gums from the inside. The pockets grow deeper and deeper. Eventually, bacteria reach your periodontal ligaments and jawbone. These supporting structures become weak, compromising the stability of your teeth. Ultimately, gum disease can result in tooth loss.

What are the Risk Factors for Gum Disease?


There are many factors that can increase your risk of developing gum disease. These factors include:
•  Poor oral hygiene. Brushing and flossing are essential for eliminating plaque and bacteria from the surfaces of your teeth. When you do not brush and floss regularly, or you skip out on regular dental cleanings and exams, bacteria and plaque can accumulate, increasing your risk.
•  Having crooked teeth. Crooked teeth are more difficult to clean properly, leaving hiding places for plaque and bacteria.
•  Using tobacco products. Tobacco products can increase the stickiness of plaque. Chemicals in products like cigarettes can also interfere with your immune system, preventing it from effectively fighting infections.
•  Dry mouth. Dry mouth is a condition in which you do not have enough saliva in your mouth. This leaves your mouth feeling dry and tacky. When your mouth is dry, it becomes an ideal place for bacteria to grow.

Symptoms of Gum Disease


There are many symptoms that can point toward gum disease. The symptoms you experience vary based on how advanced the condition is when you notice them. Symptoms include:
•  Red, swollen gums.
•  Bleeding when you brush and floss your teeth.
•  Gum recession.
•  Tooth sensitivity.
•  Loose teeth.
•  Tooth loss.

How is Gum Disease Treated?


There are several different treatments for gum disease. The type of treatment you receive will depend upon how advanced the disease is. With a thorough oral exam, we can determine the severity of your gum disease and therefore determine what treatment will provide you with the best results. Treatments include:
•  Scaling and root planing. This is a deep cleaning of your teeth and is one of the most common treatments.
•  Periodontal maintenance. This involves a series of regularly scheduled appointments to help make sure that your gums are healing properly.
•  Pocket reduction surgery. This is performed when your pockets are too deep to clean with other treatments.
•  Osseous surgery. This surgery is performed when bacteria have affected your jawbone, leaving you with bony defects. The surgery involves smoothing the defects and cleaning your teeth.


Learn More About How Gum Disease Can Affect Your Overall Health.

Treating gum disease is essential for stopping the progression of the disease and restoring the health of your mouth. If you suspect that you have gum disease, contact Raptou Family Dental today at (614) 427-0449 to schedule your appointment.

Contact Raptou Family Dental Today


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