Periodontal disease is an infection that develops in the gums around the teeth. Left untreated, the condition may lead to bone and tooth loss. You can reduce your risk of developing periodontitis by brushing and flossing at home, as well as having routine dental exams and cleanings. But even with the best oral hygiene practices, you may have some problem areas. Recognizing the signs of periodontal disease may reduce the damage to your teeth, gums and bone.
Periodontitis occurs when bacteria in plaque infiltrates your gums. The disease progresses as the bacteria multiplies and goes deeper into the soft tissue, eventually eroding the bone. As the infection spreads, your teeth are no longer protected and held in place by the gums.
Check Your Gums
The gums around your teeth should be firm and soft pink. Periodontitis causes bleeding gums. Even the smallest amount of blood when you brush and floss may indicate the onset of periodontal disease. As the bacteria grows, your gums may develop a reddish or purple color, be swollen and be tender when you touch them. You may also notice that more of the tooth is showing at the gum line. This happens when the gums pull away from the tooth.
Changes to Your Teeth
As periodontal disease continues to damage your gums, you may see changes in your teeth. The spaces between the teeth may expand, and you may notice a clear or white pus draining from the gums. Advanced cases of periodontitis may involve painful chewing, loose teeth and even a change in your bite.
Having Bad Breath
Halitosis, or bad breath, is natural in some people. If you do not normally have bad breath, a change in the way that your breath smells may indicate the onset of periodontitis.
Periodontal Disease Treatment
Regular dental cleanings can correct the earliest cases of periodontal disease. More advanced cases may require a deep cleaning of the teeth and gums to remove tartar and plaque. If you have bone loss due to periodontitis, we may recommend a bone graft. Extractions may be needed to protect the surrounding teeth.
Learn More About Periodontitis. Contact Centennial Dental Care.
To learn more about periodontal disease, dental implants and our other services, contact Centennial Dental Care. Our office is in Boise, Idaho, and you can call us directly at (208) 322-1112.