Like arthritis and hair loss, periodontal (gum) disease is often mistakenly associated with aging, and not given much thought until symptoms like inflamed and bleeding gums or in advanced cases tooth loss, make it necessary to pay an emergency visit to the dentist.
But the truth is that gum disease can affect people of all ages, resulting from poor oral health and hygiene habits that lead to unchecked plaque and bacteria buildup over time.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
How do you know if you are at risk or already suffering from gum disease? The most common symptoms of periodontitis are tenderness, swelling, and dark red gums.
Other symptoms include:
- Receding gums
- Swollen gums
- Bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- Tooth loss
Periodontal Gum Therapy in Braintree
Keeping your gums healthy and avoiding gingivitis (the first stage of gum disease) and full blown periodontitis down the line is a long term process. It begins at home with regular brushing and flossing, followed by regular trips to the dentist for yearly exams and professional dental cleanings. (Patients with a genetic and hereditary predisposition to gum disease may need to visit the dentist more often).
If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to tooth loss, as well as other potentially serious health problems. When the gums become inflamed, pockets of bacteria form under the gumline that can lead to infection.
Preventing Tooth Loss
Depending on the patient and the extent of damage to the gums and supporting bone, there are several treatment options available to address the progression of gum disease. In order to prevent permanent tooth loss, your dentist may suggest:
- Scaling and Root Planing
- Dental Implants
- Crown Lengthening Surgery
- Gum Grafting
- Periodontal Laser Treatment
- Periodontal Plastic Surgery
To learn more about periodontal gum therapy, contact a dentist at Dr. George Salem and Associates, PC in Braintree at 781-843-0660 to schedule an appointment today!