What is Gum Disease?

stock-8Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, is an inflammatory disease of the tissue and bone that support the teeth. This bacterial infection is progressive, and it can lead to the loss of gum, bone, and teeth.

Gum disease appears to affect around 80% of the population over the age of 30, although many patients have no idea they are affected. Periodontal disease is treatable, but it must be treated immediately, before it reaches its more advanced stages and yields serious consequences.

Am I at Risk for Periodontal Disease?

Everyone is at risk for periodontal disease, and the best thing we can do is brush, floss, and visit our general dentist regularly. Preventative maintenance is all we can do to keep gum disease and its symptoms at bay.

Some patients are at greater risk for periodontal disease than others. You may be at increased risk for gum disease if you:

  • Have a family history of gum disease
  • Smoke or use tobacco
  • Are pregnant
  • Consume a low-nutrition diet
  • Are obese
  • Are age 65 or older
  • Clench or grind your teeth (bruxism)

36See your dentist every six months to ensure you are doing all you can to prevent the discomfort and danger of gum disease.

Treating Periodontal Disease

If preventative maintenance is not enough to reduce your gum disease, we provide treatment consultations and options here at Harris Family Dentistry. For most patients, scaling and root planing is a simple option that will reverse gingivitis. If you are suffering from a more advanced case of periodontal disease, we may suggest gum grafting or osseous surgery.

If you have noticed bleeding or tender gums, you may have a mild case of gum disease. Give us a call right away to schedule your next appointment at Harris Family Dentistry. Our dental family will quickly deliver the effective treatment you deserve.