What Is Periodontitis And How Can You Avoid It

Periodontitis (or periodontal disease) refers to inflammatory diseases that affect the tissues that surround and support your teeth. If it is not treated, it can lead to the loosening of and loss of some teeth so it is important to see your dentist regularly to have excessive amounts of plaque removed. There are many stages of this advanced form of gum disease and they are as follows:

Aggressive Periodontitis:

It is a form of gum disease in people with usually good overall oral health. Common symptoms include a rapid increase in the size of gum pockets next to the tooth which then leads to bone loss.

Chronic Periodontitis:

A form of gum disease that requires immediate treatment as it leads to rapid bone loss and could require surgery. This is the most common form and is found mostly in adults but it can also be found in children.

Periodontitis of a Systemic Disease:

Gum disease that often happens at a young age and it is associated with a pre-existing condition such as diabetes.

Necrotizing Periodontal Disease:

This is the most dangerous form of gum disease as it is very aggressive, can result in the death of supporting tissue and often leaves your periodontist with surgery as the only option to treat it.

Periodontitis, or gum disease, is much more serious than anyone thinks as it is an infection of your gums and the bones that support your teeth and it cannot be treated with antibiotics. It is also a big threat to your overall general health as advanced periodontal disease can increase your risk of heart attack, stroke, or diabetes and pregnant women are at risk for delivering premature, low birth weight babies.

The most common cause of periodontitis is the buildup of plaque on your teeth which, if not removed, then turns into tartar (a hard substance that you cannot remove on your own) and if not removed by your dentist, it will then spread into your gums. Your body will rally to fight the infection but will not be able to stop it, therefore it will then turn on itself and begin to destroy the gum and bone tissue that holds your teeth in place.

Causes of periodontitis, or gum disease:

  • Plaque
  • Smoking and tobacco use
  • Genetics
  • Pregnancy
  • Hormonal changes
  • Teeth grinding
  • Diabetes
  • Poor nutrition
  • Stress
  • Medications
  • Medical problems
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Improper dental hygiene
  • Organic changes in the mouth
  • Saliva flow inhibitors

Signs of periodontal gum disease:

  • Redness or bleeding of gums while brushing, using floss or biting hard food
  • Gum swelling that recurs
  • Bad breath
  • Persistent metallic taste in your mouth
  • Receding gums
  • Deep pockets between teeth and gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Swollen or tender gums
  • Changes in your bite
  • Dentures that no longer fit right
  • Mouth pain
  • Pus between teeth
  • Sores in your mouth

The treatment of periodontitis depends on how far advanced it is as early gum disease can be treated non-surgically but for advanced cases, surgery may very well be required. Early treatments may consist of a prescription oral mouthwash that reduces gingivitis, or may also include scaling and root planing. Advanced periodontitis often requires surgery and the four types of surgery are:

  • Pocket reduction procedures
  • Regenerative procedures
  • Crown lengthening
  • Soft tissue grafts

So instead of waiting for this to happen, use the following prevention methods for periodontitis:

  • Good oral hygiene
  • Good diet
  • Quit smoking
  • Lower your stress level
  • Visit your dentist on a regular basis

To learn more about periodontitis, check out our section on gum disease or call us at 1-877-283-0497 to book your appointment at your convenience.

We are conveniently located one block west of Highway 11 near the Old Bradford Library.


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    Friday: Closed
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