Gum disease is not something that most of us are aware of, but did you know that it affects almost half of Americans over the age of thirty? Otherwise known as periodontal disease, gum disease is sneaky because there aren’t very many symptoms associated with it at first. In fact, many people aren’t even aware they have it. When it comes to gum disease, the earlier you treat it, the better, so your Bay Shore dentist is here to discuss recognizing and treating gingivitis.
What is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease in which you may notice that your gums bleed when you brush your teeth, you have chronic bad breath, or your gums are red and swollen. These telltale signs are the early indicators of gingivitis and gum disease, and the good news is that you can effectively manage gingivitis in this stage with a thorough professional cleaning and improvements to your home care routine.
Regular visits to your dentist every six months, or twice per year are your best defense against periodontal disease. You’ll be screened for it at every checkup, and your dental team can advise you on how to best manage your condition. Some patients are even able to reverse their gingivitis.
What is Periodontitis?
This is the advanced stage of gum disease, where damage starts to occur. Plaque and tartar build up cause your gum tissue to separate from your teeth, which allows harmful bacteria to infect your bone and soft tissue. If left untreated, this infection will eventually destroy your bone, which will lead to tooth loss. Did you know that periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in American adults?
Periodontitis requires a much deeper cleaning called scaling and root planing to reach below the gum line and remove tartar build up. Your dentist may also recommend antibiotic and laser therapy depending on the severity of your periodontitis.
At East Islip Dental Care, our team of highly skilled doctors believes that prevention is the best medicine when it comes to gum disease, and so we encourage you to attend your regular cleaning and checkups. If you find yourself dealing with gum disease, we’re well equipped to help you effectively manage your condition. Unfortunately, there’s no cure for gum disease however, with the right home care and the help of your dental team you can keep it under control.
If you notice that your gums are bleeding, red, or swollen, contact our office and schedule your next appointment right away. Your oral health is too important to risk!