Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a common dental problem affecting millions of people yearly. There are two primary types: gingivitis and periodontitis. We see both conditions regularly here at Carolina Dental Care. Understanding the differences between these two conditions and how one progresses to the next is crucial in maintaining good oral health.
Different Types of Gum Disease
Gingivitis is the milder form of gum disease. It is caused by plaque build-up on the teeth and gums. Gingivitis manifests as gum inflammation and often causes red, swollen gums that bleed easily. Gingivitis can typically be treated simply by practicing good dental hygiene, such as brushing twice daily and flossing once per day. Regular dental checks can also help to identify if Gingivitis is starting to form.
Periodontitis is a more severe form of gum disease that results from untreated gingivitis. The condition causes damage to the soft tissues and bones that support the teeth, leading to tooth loss. Common symptoms of periodontitis include bad breath, sensitive teeth, gum recession, and bleeding. In advanced cases, it may require surgical intervention. Periodontitis is a condition we want to help patients avoid at all costs due to the painful experience and sometimes costly treatment.
Causes and Treatment for Gum Disease
Plaque build-up is the primary cause of gum disease, but genetics and lifestyle choices also play a role. To prevent gum disease from getting worse, it is essential to reduce the amount of plaque on the teeth through regular brushing, flossing, and mouthwash. A healthy diet, regular cleanings from a dentist, and limiting tobacco use also help.
If you’re worried about your gum health, it is essential to seek appropriate dental care. We are often able to identify and correct the early signs of gum disease during regular dental screening. Or, if you are dealing with a more advanced case, our team can analyze the extent of the disease and recommend treatment options. Treatment may include a deep cleaning of the teeth and gums, antibiotics, or surgery.
Remember, prevention is key to maintaining good oral health! That includes a regular visit to your team at Carolina Dental Care. Call our office in Loris, SC, at 843-756-2273 or click over to www.carolinadentalcare.com.