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Do you have gum disease?

In it’s early stages, gum disease is known as ‘Gingivitis’. Gingivitis is a reversible gum infection that occurs as a result of the accumulation of plaque on and around teeth.

 

Plaque is a sticky, colourless film of bacteria that constantly forms on the teeth. These bacteria produce toxins that irritate the gums and cause them to become swollen and tender.

 

Early signs of gingivitis are bleeding gums when brushing or flossing and bad breath.

 

If left untreated, Gingivitis may progress to a more severe and destructive type of gum disease called ‘Periodontitis’.

The Progression of Gum Disease

If left untreated, Gingivitis may progress to a more severe and destructive type of gum disease called “Periodontitis”.

 

Periodontitis occurs when the bacterial toxins begin to attack the bone and periodontal ligament which holds teeth in place. Subsequent irreversible loss of these supporting structures results in further progression of the disease.

 

If treatment is not carried out, eventual tooth loss is inevitable. Early detection of gum disease is vital if tooth loss is to be prevented. If detected and treated early gum disease can be reversed or controlled in most cases.

 

Who is at risk?
Anyone with teeth can be affected by gum disease at any age. Many factors can affect the risks of attracting gum disease.

 

Genetics, frequency of teeth cleaning, certain medical conditions and medications, poorly fitting dental appliances and cigarette smoking are some of the many factors which can affect a person’s susceptibility to Gum Disease.

What should I do if I think I have gum disease?

Visit your dentist and dental hygienist as soon as possible for an examination and dental hygiene treatment.