It’s no surprise that dental problems can emerge from a variety of places: the wrong foods, genetics, a chipped tooth from a football game that results in a root canal in the future. One of the most important things we can do as practitioners is to help patients engage with and deeply understand their own health, including why these problems emerge and what we can to do treat them. It’s for this effort that we examine the nine most common dental problems that we see on a regular basis.
Problem Three: Gum Disease
Often referred to as periodontal disease, gum disease can be a significant problem that required immediate attention from a dentist or periodontist.
Gum disease is caused by the plaque created by bacteria in your mouth. If left untreated, the plaque sits on your teeth and gums and hardens to form tartar. Tartar can’t be cleaned with a toothbrush and requires a professional cleaning from a dental hygienist.
Over time, plaque and tartar wreak havoc on your gums and causes gingivitis. Common gingivitis can still be treated by regular hygiene and visits to the dentist. However, once gingivitis becomes advanced, it leads to periodontitis or periodontal disease. Periodontal disease causes gums to pull away from the teeth, creating pockets that become infected. The body then fights this infection, resulting in bone loss and destruction of the connective tissue that holds your teeth in place. In the end, the teeth may have to be removed to fight the infection and restore the mouth to full health again.
Gum disease often starts after the age of 30 and smokers have a particularly increased risk for developing this problem. If you have symptoms like regularly bleeding gums, persistently bad breath, swollen gums, or pain when chewing, you should visit your dentist for a checkup.
If you have any questions about gum disease or if you would like to schedule a free consultation, please contact our team or make an appointment. Our incredible staff will give you the best dental care possible.