Gum Disease & Gingivitis

What is Gingivitis?

Gum disease is a result of extensive exposure to plaque. This sticky, colorless film forms on teeth while you are either eating or sleeping. Gingivitis is a medical term that stands for early gum disease, or, if you prefer, periodontal disease.

When there are materials that are left behind from eating, this debris can form damaging bacteria. This bacteria can cause gum disease, which results from infections that are triggered by it. You may have some very early warning signs. Chronic bad breath, tender or painful swollen gums, and minor bleeding after brushing or flossing are some of the obvious results of this condition, But there are also other cases where gingivitis can go totally unnoticed. If not discovered early on, these infections can cause the gums to separate from the teeth. This creates more opportunities for subsequent infection and decay.

This disease is avoidable, despite the fact that it is the major cause of tooth loss in many adults.

The downside of not treating gingivitis is much more serious oral problems. You may face abscesses, bone loss or periodontitis. All are devastating and very painful.

Treating Periodontitis

There are a number of ways to treat the disease. There is a procedure called root planning. This involves thorough cleaning and scraping below the gum line so the dentist can smooth the roots. If effective, this procedure allows the gums to reattach to the tooth structure. Unfortunately, not all instances of scaling and root planning work to create successful reattachment of the teeth to the gums. Should your dentist encounter this outcome, he or she will have to take additional measures. The idea is to eliminate the periodontal pockets, so gums, teeth and roots can reattach themselves.

There have been instances where pregnancy has been the culprit in causing a form of gingivitis. There are big hormonal changes taking place in the woman's body and that reaction can promote plaque production.