Some people are petrified when they spot bits of blood in their spittle while brushing their teeth. Other people take it all in stride and eventually suffer long-term damage to their teeth and gums as a result. Learning to spot the signs of gum disease can be key to keeping your teeth and gums healthy and free of irreversible damage from gum disease. Find out how you can spot the presence of gum disease and what a local dentist in Kansas City, MO can do to treat it.
What is Gum Disease?
Even the most judiciously brushed and flossed mouths still face a steady stream of bacteria every day. When brushing and flossing begin to be neglected, those bacteria feast on leftover food particles in the mouth and form plaque. Plaque then starts hardens into tartar and eventually start to form bacterial pockets between the teeth and gums. And the only way to effectively remove tartar is to kick back in the dentist’s chair for a cleaning.
There are two stages of gum disease, one reversible and the other irreversible:
Gingivitis – this is the inflammation of the gums. Minor bleeding may occur when brushing.
Periodontitis – bacteria infect the gums. They begin eating away at the gums and eventually at the roots of teeth.
What Are the Symptoms of Gum Disease?
Periodontitis and gingivitis share many of the same symptoms, though some are either unique to the former or more intense:
Bleeding gums – gum bleed especially easy with periodontitis, but bleeding is also common with gingivitis
Swollen gums – the gums are swollen and tender
Loose teeth – there may be a bit of play in some teeth with periodontitis, but not with gingivitis
Receding gums – the gum line begins to recede, making the teeth look like they’re starting to get longer. This symptom is unique to periodontitis
Sores, pus and bad breath – each of these are common with periodontitis, while bad breath is the only one of these three symptoms shared with gingivitis
How to Best Treat Gum DiseaseSchedule a consultation with a local dentist to get definitive answers about the state of your oral health and to learn more about your options for treating gum disease in Kansas City, MO.