You've got used to think that gum disease is your grandparent's unhappy lot, don't you? Are you sure? In fact, children and teenagers also suffer from gum diseases. And this problem is not only embarrassing (associated with bad breath), but also serious: it might result into major soft tissue and teeth supporting bone damage and, consequently, cause a tooth loss.
But do not panic, - you are not alone! According to experts, most people will face this health problem some time in their lives. However, general awareness and early treatment will help you to prevent the serious after-effects of the disease. So, let's learn more about gum diseases!
When you develop gum disease you hardly feel any pain at its early stages, you may not notice its symptoms and might not get the early treatment. So, be very careful during your oral hygiene procedures, and see your dentist, if you have noticed swelling and redness in your gums or their bleeding after you brush or floss your teeth, or touch your gums.
If left untreated, the disease will progress, and you will face more serious disorders, such as long-lasting bad breath, an unpleasant taste in the mouth, sensitive teeth (painful reaction to the hot or cold liquids), receding gums (most of your teeth become visible), pus coming from your gums, loose teeth, which may make eating difficult, teeth loss. In the most severe cases you will have abscesses (the painful pockets of pus forming on your gums or under your teeth). If you believe, you have these symptoms, or have any concerns, immediately visit your dentist.
Periodontal (Gum) disease is associated with the serious chronic bacterial infection. It, when left untreated, can cause the teeth loss. The word periodontal has the Latin origin and is translated as "around the tooth". So, it is clear now, that the periodontal disease affects the gums and the bone, on which the teeth rest. Gum diseases may affect from only one tooth to many teeth.
It starts, when the bacteria in plaque development leads to the gums inflammation. Consequently, you should remember to remove the plague every day in order avoid the breeding ground for the germs evolvement. This is achieved by the regular teeth brushing and flossing.
Gingivitis and periodontitis are two major types of gum disease. Gingivitis is a much milder form of gum disease, usually caused by inadequate oral hygiene. This form of the disease is reversible. It affects the gums only. In this case they become red and swollen. The gums also bleed easily, when you brush or floss your teeth. But the process hardly causes any pain. When gingivitis is untreated, it often develops into much more serious, soft tissues destructing forms of gum disease called periodontitis.
In periodontitis, your teeth first become loose, as the gums become separated from your teeth due to constant intoxication. Eventually, the so-called "pockets" get formed. These are spaces between teeth and infected gums. They become the perfect breeding environment for the bacteria. The toxins produced by them stimulate the body immune system chronic inflammatory response. This way, the body, actually, starts to fight itself. This leads to the soft tissue and the supportive bone destruction. If periodontitis is not treated, it eventually leads to the teeth loss, as the affected teeth become loose.
First of all, take care of your oral cavity and, especially of your teeth to prevent it from occurring: regularly brush and floss them. Also make sure to visit your dentist for the check-ups at least twice a year. Smoking is particularly harmful to your teeth and gums. To make things worth, it often masks gum diseases symptoms. So, it would be a good idea to quit it.
If gum disease does occur, then the treatment will depend on the problem severity. In any case the treatment is aimed at the infection control. Antibiotics may be prescribed to reduce the swelling. In the most severe cases the dental surgery is appointed.
Be healthy and wealthy, carefully follow your oral hygiene procedures, and routinely visit your dentist for the check-ups. And remember: untreated gingivitis can develop into periodontitis and eventually lead to a tooth loss. So, if you notice at least one of the above-mentioned gum diseases symptoms, or have any concerns, immediately see your dentist.