What is Gum Infection/Disease
Gum infections, otherwise known as periodontal disease usually can occur when plaque buildup (Gingivitis) from poor brushing or flossing. It leads to surface inflammation, confined to the top layer of the gums, and can evolve into a deeper inflammation if not taken care of.
Everybody has a range of bacteria in their mouth. Plaque is constantly being formed by some of these bacteria when they feed on the sugars in the foods and drinks you consume. Plaque provides the perfect environment for the bacteria that can cause gum disease and tooth decay to live and multiply.
Gum disease tends to progress faster, or develop regularly in patients who smoke, those with diabetes, or patients undergoing hormonal changes (during pregnancy for example).
Care and Maintenance
Your dentist will take the time and pay attention to detail, when providing thorough scaling and cleaning, both above and below the gums.
It is important to maintain regular check-up and cleans throughout the year the reduce and prevent the risk of gum disease.
Untreated gum disease may also have detrimental effects on your general health, as periodontitis has been linked with a higher incidence of cardiovascular disease and stroke.
For female patients considering pregnancy, it has been linked with low birth weight or premature births. Cardiac and vascular surgeons often require gum health to be established by dentists as part of their patient treatment plans.
The dental professional may also:
- Take an x-ray to see whether there is any bone loss.
- Refer you to a periodontist. Periodontists are experts in the diagnosis and treatment of gum disease and may provide you with treatment options that are not offered by your dentist.
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