Posts Tagged ‘gum disease stages’

Periodontal Disease and its Stages

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010

Many people (usually around 3 out of 4!) have symptoms of periodontal disease, which is an infection of the tissues supporting your teeth.  These symptoms include persistent bad breath; bleeding gums (especially when you brush); red, swollen, and tender gums; gums that recede from the teeth; pus between the teeth and gums when the gums are pressed; permanent teeth that are loose or separating; changes in your dental structure when biting; and changes in the way dentures fit.  Health gums have a healthy pink color, they do not bleed, and the gum line hugs the teeth tightly. 

 

Here are the various stages of periodontal disease:

1)  Gingivitis:  The gums bleed easily when you brush, floss, or probe them.  The gums are inflamed and sensitive to touch, and there is the possibility of halitosis and bad taste.  The gums between the teeth may look bluish-red in color.

2) Early Periodontitis: The gums may start pulling away from the teeth, and the inflammation and bleeding of the gums is more noticeable.  There is bad breath and bad taste , slight loss of bone (horizontally on X-ray), and there may be pockets of 3-4mm between the teeth and gums.

3) Moderate Periodontitis: The gum may boil, and abscesses may develop.  Since the gums are receding, the teeth appear to look longer.  The front teeth may start to drift, showing spaces.  The person suffering often has chronic bad breath, bad taste, and both horizontal and angular bone loss (on X-ray).  The pockets between the gum and teeth range from 4-6mm deep.

4) Advanced Periodontitis: The teeth become loose or mobile.  Bad breath and bad taste are chronic, and the roots of the teeth are exposed and extra-sensitive to hot and cold temperatures.  On X-ray, there is severe angular and horizontal bone loss, and the pockets between the gum line and teeth are more than 6mm deep.

Gum Disease Cure

So what should you do if you are having any of these symptoms?  You should definitely go and get diagnosed and your teeth cleaned by your dentist.  Also, a good gingivitis cure is PerioTherapy, which is a product line that focuses on gum care.  Try it out!

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Gum Disease

Friday, August 14th, 2009

What Is Gum Disease? 

Gum disease, also known was periodontal disease, is an infection of the tissues and bones surrounding and supporting the teeth.  The shallow v-shaped crevice between the tooth and the gums is called a sulcus, and gum diseases attack right below the gum line in the sulcus, where it causes the tissues to break down.  The sulcus can develop into a pocket as the tissues break down.

There are two stages.  Gingivitis is reversible and milder than the periodontitis stage, since it only affects the gums.  Gingivitis generally involves having swollen, red gums that bleed easily when one flosses/brushes.  Generally it does not cause pain.  Gingivitis can turn into periodontitis, which is a much serious and destructive version of periodontal disease.  Periodontitis involves the gums pulling away from the teeth, leaving deep pockets where the bacteria can grow and damage the bone that supports the teeth.  The gums also shrink back from the teeth, and the teeth may need to be pulled out, or may become loose and fall out. 

Gum Disease Causes

People’s mouths are always creating plaque, which is a clear and sticky substance that contains bacteria.  The bacteria contains toxins that can irritate the gums and cause gum infection.  It is necessary to remove plaque from one’s teeth regularly otherwise the plaque can spread below the gums and damage the tooth-supporting bone.  Hardened plaque is known as tartar and has to be removed by a dentist/dental hygienist. 

Here are some factors that increase the risk of gum disease occurring:

-          Chewing or smoking tobacco
-          Certain medications (Steroids, some types of anti-epilepsy drugs, cancer therapy drugs, calcium channel blockers and oral contraceptives)
-          Uneven teeth
-          Bridges that do not fit properly
-          Pregnancy/hormonal changes
-          Defective fillings
-          Poor oral hygiene
-          Genetic predisposition
-          Weak immunity system, possibly caused by:
            *Excessive amounts of stress
            *Poor diet
            *Diabetes and/or other systemic diseases

Gum Disease Warning Signs

Gingivitis Symptoms

-          Gums that easily bleed
-          Tender/bright  red/swollen gums

Periodontitis Symptoms

-          Pus between teeth and gums
-          Gums pulling away from the teeth
-          Chronic bad breath/foul tastes
-          Permanent teeth that are becoming loose/separating
-          Change in the way that one’s dentures fit
-          Change in the way one’s teeth fit together when biting

How is Gum Disease Diagnosed?

An oral care expert will know to look for the following:

-          Bleeding gums
-          Plaque/tartar buildup above and below the gum line
-          Areas where the gum tissue is pulling away from the teeth
-          Growing pockets between the gums and teeth

Gum Disease Treatment

If the gum disease is mild, simply brushing, flossing, and going to the dentist regularly should be enough to get rid of it.

If the gum disease becomes worse and one has periodontitis, root planing and scaling may be in order.  This rids the mouth of plaque and tartar buildup.  Antibiotics might be recommended, and surgery could be necessary depending on how severe the disease is.

One can have periodontal disease without having any symptoms.  This makes dental visits and examinations important.  The type of treatment one should get depends on the type and severity of gum disease.  Good dental hygiene should be practiced in order to prevent the disease from occurring, becoming worse, or recurring.  Periodontal disease does not mean you will lose your teeth.  In order to maintain good oral hygiene, one should brush, floss, use mouthwash, eat a healthy diet, and schedule regular dental examinations.

Source: ADA, Web MD 

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