Periodontal disease affects the gums and structures that support your teeth

The first warning sign of periodontal disease commonly comes in the form of gingivitis when the rim of the gums next to teeth become red and swollen and bleed easily when touched. If untreated it may progress and become periodontal disease, which can mean damage to gum and bone and can even become so severe that teeth become loose and may need to be removed. Periodontal disease can be treated if caught in early stages via tooth scaling and root planning.

What is gingivitis?

Gingivitis occurs when the gums become infected and inflamed and is caused by plaque left on and in between your teeth.  If plaque is left on your teeth, the bacteria will sit on the gums and cause them to be irritated which can lead to gingivitis. To prevent this from occurring the best thing you can do is brush and floss regularly to ensure that plaque doesn’t build up. During your dental cleaning we will also remove any hardened plaque (which is known as tartar) to ensure your teeth are clean and your gums healthy. The common signs of gingivitis include:

  • Red or swollen gums
  • Tender gums
  • Bleeding when you brush
  • Receding gum line
  • Gums pulled away from the teeth
  • Bad breath

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease occurs when gingivitis is not treated and the inflammation becomes much more severe. In the case of periodontal disease your gums will pull away from the tooth and create spaces called pockets. These pockets are then more susceptible to bacteria and the spread of infection which can cause pain to your gums and jaw and can even lead to tooth loss in the most severe cases.

Who can get gum disease?

Anyone can get gum disease at any age; usually we see this condition in adults between 30-40 years of age and more commonly among men. For our younger patients we often see the signs of gingivitis as a result of poor hygiene. Brushing and flossing your teeth are essential to maintaining your oral health and to ensure your teeth remain healthy we encourage patients to visit our Kingaroy dental practice every six months. For patients who are concerned about bad breath, sore or bleeding gums, these may be the signs of gum disease and we recommend visiting South Burnett Dental Group as soon as possible.