How Does Gum Disease Start?

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February 15, 2023

Wouldn’t it be nice to have healthy teeth and gums for the rest of your life? It is possible if you visit your dentist regularly and get the best dental services in Hueytown, AL.  

Having a healthy mouth is not something you wish for. It takes a proactive attitude to make it happen. If you don’t take your dentist’s advice, it won’t take long before you start experiencing symptoms of gum disease. Did you know that nearly half of the adults aged 30 years old and above have gum disease? How does gum disease develop? Are there ways to avoid it?

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Understanding Gum Disease

What Is Gum Disease?  

Gum disease or periodontitis is an infection that destroys the soft tissues and bones that support your teeth. If gum disease is left untreated, it will gradually cause your jawbone to erode. The term “periodontitis” means inflammation of the structures surrounding the tooth.  

The inflammation is caused by bacteria that attach to the surface of your teeth and along the gumline. Over time, they will irritate and inflame your gums. Tooth loss is a likely outcome of untreated gum disease. It also increases your risk of a heart attack and other health complications.  

What Are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?

Some of the signs and symptoms of gum disease are the following:

  • Swollen gums
  • Bleeding gums
  • Visible plaque and tartar on teeth
  • Bad breath
  • Bleeding gums when brushing and flossing
  • Pain when chewing or eating
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Receding gums
  • Extra spaces between your teeth

How Is Gum Disease Treated?  

#1 Scaling and Root Planing

An approach often used to treat gum disease is deep cleaning or scaling and root planing. It differs from routine teeth cleaning since it removes large amounts of plaque and tartar to restore your gum health.  

Scaling and debridement involve removing tartar on your teeth, the areas above the gum line, and gum pockets. The rough areas of your teeth are polished and smoothened to prevent plaque from forming. The frequency depends on how much plaque has accumulated.  

#2 Medications

Another way of treating gum disease is through medications. The meds may come in the form of gels or rinses and contain chlorhexidine, an antibacterial compound. Sometimes your dentist can insert minocycline hydrochloride microspheres inside the gum pockets to minimize plaque buildup. In some cases, you’ll be prescribed oral antibiotics. The type of medication you need will be based on your assessment.  

#3 Surgery

If conservative treatments don’t work, your dentist will have no choice but to recommend periodontal surgery to remove plaque and bacteria from gum pockets. It also eliminates bacteria in your tooth roots.  

Can You Prevent Gum Disease?

The good news is that gum disease is completely preventable. To avoid gum inflammation and infection, we recommend practicing good dental habits, such as brushing your teeth twice daily and flossing once a day before bedtime. Visiting your dentist twice yearly is also helpful so they can identify signs of trouble early and treat them before gum disease advances and becomes irreversible.

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Looking for the Best Dental Services in Hueytown, AL?

It takes good dental hygiene habits and regular visits to your dentist to reduce your risk of gum disease. We strive to provide you with the best dental services at Church Family Dental. Our goal is to give you the absolute best experience from top to bottom. Contact us to secure a slot and book an appointment.



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