An infection of the tissues that support your teeth is known as periodontal gum disease also known as periodontitis. Poor brushing and flossing practices frequently contribute to it by allowing plaque, a sticky film of germs, to accumulate on the teeth and harden. Swollen, bloodshot, and bleeding gums are the first sign. Chewing may become painful if it spreads to the bones near the gums if untreated. In the worst scenarios, teeth might become loose or require extraction. It is one of the most common dental diseases affecting millions of people worldwide, and the main cause of tooth loss in adults. Poor oral hygiene, smoking, genetic predisposition, and certain medical conditions such as diabetes and autoimmune diseases can increase the risk of developing periodontal disease. Early detection and treatment are essential in preventing the progression of the disease and preserving the teeth and surrounding tissues. Regular check-ups, good oral hygiene practices, and lifestyle modification can help prevent the development of periodontal gum disease and maintain optimal oral health.
We should never take teeth for granted because they are the main part of our body. You will not be able to eat any food if you don’t have teeth. It is impossible to survive without teeth, so they must be taken care of to prevent you from such diseases. In this article, our main concern is periodontal gum disease. We will talk about its symptoms, causes, and some useful tips to save you from this disease, along with some treatments.
Gums that are in good health are firm and tightly about teeth. Healthy gums can be any hue. In some people, they can be pale pink, while in others; they can be dark pink and brown.
Periodontal gum disease symptoms can include the following:
- Puffy or swollen gums.
- Gums that are bright red, dark blood red, or dark purple.
- When touched, the gums feel sore.
- Easy to bleed gums
- After brushing your teeth, your toothbrush looks pink.
- Blood comes out of your mouth when you are brushing or flossing your teeth.
- You may have bad breath that won’t go away even after brushing.
- There is pus between your gum and teeth.
- You will lose teeth or have loose teeth.
- Difficulty in chewing because of pain.
- New, dark triangle-shaped gaps form in between your teeth.
- Receding gums are gums that peel away from your teeth, giving the appearance that your teeth are longer than usual.
- A change in how your teeth bite together.
- Sensitive teeth.
Causes of Periodontal Gum Disease
In most cases, periodontal gum disease starts with a plaque. Plaque is a bacterium. It is a sticky film made of bacteria. When plaque starts to build on your teeth, it’s a dangerous sign and you need to consult a dentist at your earliest. If it is left untreated, this plaque turns out to be periodontal gum disease so it is better to stop it in time. Let’s discuss some causes of periodontal gum disease along with some risk factors which can be the cause of this disease.
- Plaque is formed on your teeth by the interaction of sugar and starches in food with the bacteria commonly found in the mouth. Brushing twice a day and flossing once a day removes plaque, but the problem is that it comes back quickly.
- The reformation of the plaque brings us to the second cause of this disease. If plaque is left on your teeth, it can harden into tartar behind the gum line. It takes more effort to get rid of tartar. Brushing and flossing won’t get rid of it; professional dental cleaning is required. The longer plaque and tartar remain on your teeth, the more harm they can cause because they are full of bacteria.
- The mildest type of gum disease, gingivitis, can be brought on by plaque. Inflammation and swelling of the gum tissue at the base of your teeth are symptoms of gingivitis. Gum tissue is also known as gingiva. Professional care and proper oral hygiene at home can reverse gingivitis, but only if it is addressed before the bone loss occurs.
- Periodontal gum disease can be brought on by persistent gum inflammation and swelling. This eventually results in the development of deep pockets between your gums and teeth. Over time, these pockets deepen as they grow filled with germs, tartar, and plaque. These severe infections result in bone and tissue loss if left untreated. You might eventually lose one or more teeth. Moreover, persistent inflammation might tax your immune system, leading to other health issues.
Other Risk Factors that can Cause Periodontal Gum Disease
- Poor Oral Health Care and Habits
- Smoking and chewing tobacco
- Obesity or overweight
- Hormonal changes, such as those brought on by menopause or pregnancy
- Substance use for pleasure, such as vaping, smoking marijuana, or any other drug
- Poor diet or nutrition, which includes low vitamin C level
- Genetics, some people get this disease from their parents because their parents had the same disease
- Use of certain medicines that cause dry mouth or gum changes
- Immunosuppressive conditions include cancer treatment, HIV/AIDS, and leukemia.
- A few illnesses, including Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis
- Stress can also be the cause of periodontal gum disease
- Crooked teeth
- Defective fillings
- Bridges that no longer fit properly
Tooth loss may result from periodontal gum disease. Via gum tissue, the bacteria that cause periodontitis can get into your bloodstream and potentially impact other parts of your body. For instance, there is a connection between periodontitis and conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, coronary artery disease, preterm birth, low birth weight, and difficulties managing blood sugar in those with diabetes.
Useful Tips for Treatment
Fortunately, several effective treatments for periodontal gum disease can help you to prevent further damage and restore the health of your gums and teeth. Following are some tips for the treatment of periodontal gum disease:
Practice Good Oral Hygiene
The first and foremost thing to prevent your teeth and gum from this disease is to practice good oral hygiene. Make a habit of brushing your teeth twice daily and flossing once daily. This will remove the plaque that will form on your teeth. Also, use an antiseptic mouthwash to kill the bacteria in your mouth. It is better to consult a dentist to choose toothpaste and mouthwash for you.
Regular dental check-ups are also necessary to save yourself from this disease. You must visit the doctor once in 6 to 12 months. The dentist will recommend you if you need any cleaning or not. If cleaning is done on a regular basis, it will remove plaque and tartar that may contribute to gum disease.
Use of Soft-Bristled Toothbrush
Dentists recommend the use of a soft toothbrush because it prevents damage to your teeth and gums. The hard-bristled toothbrush can damage the gum’s tissues, exposing the teeth’ roots. If you continuously use a hard brush, your teeth may start bleeding, which can be dangerous.
Smoking is the biggest cause of periodontal gum disease. The reason is that it slows the process of healing and causes infection. Quitting smoking will not only improve the health of your gums and teeth, but it will also prevent you from other health problems.
Maintaining Healthy Diet
Maintaining a healthy diet is another useful tip to save you from being infected by gum disease. Eat foods like fruits, vegetables, and grains which help you to boost your immune system. When your immune system is good, it will fight back against any bacterial attacks, and hence your gums will not be affected. Avoid eating sugary and starchy food, as they cause plaque to form on your teeth which is the beginning of periodontal gum disease.
Treat Underlying Health Conditions
If you have certain underlying health conditions like diabetes, it is better to consult your doctor and take proper medication for them. If they are not taken care of and not treated, then it can increase the risk of periodontal gum disease. Many other health conditions, like stomach problems, can be a cause of gum disease, so you must consult your doctor to manage them effectively.
Scaling and Root Planning
Scaling and root planning are nonsurgical ways of removing plaque and tartar from your teeth. It is usually done by giving local anesthesia. You have to visit multiple times for scaling. It is a process in which the dentist removes dirt from your teeth and then polishes them to look white and shining. It also includes smoothing of roots to reattach teeth to the gums.
Antibiotics can also be helpful in some cases but don’t do self-medication. The doctor should prescribe the antibiotics after a complete examination of your teeth. There are two ways of using antibiotics. The first is by taking it in a pill form, and the second is by applying directly to teeth.
Surgery is always the final option in any case. In severe cases of periodontal gum disease, surgery may be required to remove damaged tissue and promote healing. This may include gum draft, bone draft, or guided tissue generation. Surgery is a risky option, and most doctors don’t recommend it unless there is no other option left.
Periodontal gum disease is a common condition found in most people, and it has some severe consequences if left untreated. Utilizing the above steps can be essential to avoid this disease, or if affected, practicing these steps will help you prevent and treat periodontal gum disease. Avoid those things and habits that can cause this disease, especially smoking. If you suspect, you may have gum disease consult your dentist as soon as possible for evaluation and treatment plan.