What is Gum disease?
The first signs are bleeding gums when brushing and/ or bad breath, loose teeth .It is also known as Periodontal disease and is very common amongst adults.
Gum (periodontal) disease affects the gum and bone supporting your teeth. It is caused by plaque, the soft and sticky substance that collects on our teeth. Plaque is predominantly made up of bacteria.
These bacteria feed on sugar from our diet and produce substances and toxins that cause gum disease.
One of the first signs of periodontal disease is bleeding gums.
Effective home tooth brushing with regular visits to your hygienist can help prevent gum disease.
Your clinician will advise, you and he hygienist, on the number of visits you will need treat any gum disease and also how much it will cost.
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FAQs about gum disease:
What is gum disease?
Gum disease describes swelling, soreness or infection of the tissues supporting the teeth. There are two main forms of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontal disease.
It is advisable to visit our dental hygienist in Leeds city centre atleast once a year for general oral health maintenance. OUr cosmetic dentists will advise you on more specific regimes for visiting the dental hygienist after your initial examination.
What is gingivitis?
Gingivitis means inflammation of the gums. This is when the gums around the teeth become very red and swollen.
One of the first signs of gum disease is bleeding gums when they are brushed during cleaning.
What is periodontal disease?
If start of gum disease (gingivitis) is not treated, it can turn into periodontal disease. There are a number of types of periodontal disease and they all affect the tissues supporting the teeth.
As the gum disease becomes worse the bone anchoring the teeth in the jaw is lost, making the teeth loose.
If this is not treated, the teeth may eventually fall out. In fact, more teeth are lost through periodontal disease than through tooth decay.
Am I likely to suffer from gum disease?
Most probably yes. Most people suffer from some form of gum disease, and it is the major cause of tooth loss in adults.
However, gum disease develops very slowly in most people, and it can be slowed down to a rate that should allow you to keep most of your teeth for life.
Thus, it is advisable to visit our dental hygienist in Leeds city centre atleast once a year for general oral health maintenance. Our cosmetic dentists will advise you on more specific regimes for visiting the dental hygienist after your initial examination.
What causes gum disease?
All gum disease is caused by dental plaque.
Plaque is a film of bacteria which forms on the surface of the teeth and gums every day. Many of the bacteria in plaque are completely harmless, but there are some that have been shown to be the main cause of gum disease. To prevent and treat gum disease, you need to make sure you remove all the plaque from your teeth every day. This is done by brushing and flossing.
Regular professional cleaning by our cosmetic dentist or dental hygientist can be used to prevent or treat gum disease.
How do I know if I have gum disease?
The first sign is blood on the toothbrush or in the rinsing water when you clean your teeth. Your gums may also bleed when you are eating, leaving a bad taste in your mouth. Your breath may also become unpleasant.
What should I do if I think I have gum disease?
The first thing to do is visit your dentist for a thorough check-up of your teeth and gums. The dentist can measure the cuff of gum around each tooth to see if there is any sign that periodontal disease has started. X-rays may also be needed to see the amount of bone that has been lost.
This assessment of gum disease is very important, so the correct treatment can be prescribed for you.
Can smoking affect my gums and teeth?
Smoking can also lead to gum disease. Patients who smoke are more likely to produce bacterial plaque, which leads to gum disease.
The gums are affected because smoking causes a lack of oxygen in the bloodstream, so the infected gums fail to heal. Smoking causes people to have more dental plaque and for gum disease to progress more rapidly than in non-smokers.
Gum disease still remains the most common cause of tooth loss in adults.
So, it is advisable to visit our dental hygienist in Leeds city centre atleast once a year for general oral health maintenance. Our cosmetic dentists will advise you on more specific regimes for visiting the dental hygienist after your initial examination.
What happens if gum disease is not treated?
Unfortunately, gum disease progresses painlessly on the whole so that you do notice the damage it is doing.
However, the bacteria are sometimes more active and this makes your gums sore. This can lead to gum abscesses, and pus may ooze from around the teeth.
Over a number of years, the bone supporting the teeth can be lost. If the disease is left untreated for a long time, treatment can become more difficult.
What treatment is needed?
Your dentist will usually give your teeth a thorough clean. You will also be shown how to remove plaque successfully yourself, cleaning all surfaces of your teeth thoroughly and effectively. This may take a number of sessions with the dentist or hygienist.
Professional cleaning removes the bacteria below the gum line and has been proven to prevent gum disease.
Once your teeth are clean, your dentist may decide to carry out further cleaning of the roots of the teeth, to make sure that the last pockets of bacteria are removed. This is known as root planing.
You will probably need the treatment area to be numbered before anything is done. Afterwards, you may feel some discomfort for up to 48 hours.
Once I have had treatment, can I get periodontal disease again?
The periodontal diseases are never cured. But as long as you keep up the home care you have been taught, any further loss of bone will be very slow and it may stop altogether. However, you must make sure you remove plaque every day, and go for regular check ups by the dentist and hygienist. It is advisable to visit our dental hygienist in Leeds city centre atleast once a year for general oral health maintenance. Our cosmetic dentists will advise you on more specific regimes for visiting the dental hygienist after your initial examination.
Clarendon Dental Spa
Cosmetic dentists Leeds West Yorkshire