December 3, 2018
Did you know gum disease affects around 80% of the U.S. population at some point in their lives? This incredibly common disease is the infection of your gums and your teeth’s supporting tissue. Its early stages are reversible, but after that, it can do permanent damage to your oral health. Read on to learn the signs of gum disease in Allentown, what causes it, and what your treatment options are from a trusted dentist.
What Causes Gum Disease?
The most common cause of gum disease is poor oral health. Plaque and bacteria that isn’t cleaned away from your gumline can infect and inflame your gum tissue. This usually causes tenderness and bleeding. Other risk factors of gum disease include:
- Smoking and chewing tobacco
- Diseases that affect your immune system
- Crooked teeth
- Old or defective fillings
What Are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
Check out some of the most common signs of gum disease:
- Bleeding, tender, or irritated gums
- Pain when chewing
- Persistent bad breath
- Swollen gums
- Sensitive teeth
- Pain when chewing
What Are the Stages of Gum Disease?
There are 3 main stages of gum disease:
- Gingivitis: This stage results in swollen or irritated gums that bleed. Seeing your dentist for a regular cleaning and improving your oral healthcare routine can typically reverse this stage and stop the disease in its tracks.
- Periodontitis: If your gingivitis goes untreated, your gums will recede and form little pockets that are home to bacteria. During this stage, your gum tissue and bone can get damaged permanently.
- Advanced periodontitis: If you haven’t gotten treatment yet for the earlier stages, your gums, jawbone, and connective tissue will start to deteriorate. This can eventually lead to loosened and completely lost teeth.
What Are My Treatment Options?
As stated above, if you get in to see your dentist during the gingivitis stage, a regular checkup and cleaning combined with a good oral health routine will be enough to eliminate gum disease. However, if your gum disease has reached the more advanced stages, you may need periodontal therapy in Allentown.
Your dentist has multiple treatment options, which will be recommended based on your specific gums. A common type of treatment, scaling and root planing, removes plaque and tartar buildup from beneath the gumline to prevent further damage of your gum tissue. They will also smooth out your tooth’s roots to make it harder for plaque to cling to them in the future.
Your dentist also offers antibiotic therapy, usually taken in pill form, that can help prevent bacteria from attacking your gums. This is typically used in combination with scaling and root planing.
Gum disease is an incredibly common problem, but the good news is that it can still be reversed in its beginning stage. That’s why it’s important to know the symptoms and your treatment options, so you can stop this disease before it becomes serious.
About the Practice
Dr. Eric J. Marsh and Dr. Michele A. Pisano-Marsh are a team of dentists who take pride in offering expert periodontal therapy to their patients. They know how common gum disease is, which is why they want you to know the stages and symptoms. They currently run their own practice, and they can be contacted through their website or by phone at (610) 432-8037 for any questions.
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