5 Signs of Gum Disease

5 Signs of Gum Disease

When we think of dental health, most of us probably think only about the teeth. Yet gum disease is very common—nearly half of American adults suffer from this condition. Gingivitis is a mild form of gum disease that can progress into periodontitis, a serious condition. If gum disease is left untreated, it can lead to infections, gum recession, and even tooth and bone loss. Not only are your gums an important part of your oral health, but they impact your overall health as well. At Prescott Dentistry, we want you to be aware of these 5 signs of gum disease: 

1. Red/Swollen Gums

Redness and swelling are a few of the early warning signs of gum disease, or gingivitis. You might notice swelling in one isolated area, or across your entire gum line. Swelling, or inflammation, is caused by irritation due to bacteria and tartar build-up on the teeth. Swollen gums are likely to be painful and sensitive to hot/cold temperatures. 

2. Bleeding

Gums should not bleed when you brush and floss. This is another common early sign of gum disease. It is a serious warning sign, but with the correct treatment, we can easily help you restore your oral health at this stage. So if you see blood when you brush, don’t “brush” it off—let us know at your next dental appointment.

3. Bad Breath 

Chronic bad breath, or halitosis, can also be one of the signs of gum disease. Gum disease creates pockets in your gums, where odor-causing bacteria can build up. These pockets of bacteria can be healed with a thorough gum cleaning. 

4. Receding Gum Line

If you’re wondering whether your gums are receding, one way to tell is by looking at your teeth. Do they look longer? This might be an indication of receding gums. By the time this symptom appears, your gum disease has progressed to a serious level. As the gums pull back, the tooth root may become exposed, leaving it vulnerable to bacteria and decay. Scaling and root planing, and antibiotics are required to treat gum disease at this stage. A graft may even be necessary to rebuild the gum line if the gum recession is extremely advanced. 

5. Loose Teeth

In advanced periodontitis, the fibers and bone supporting your teeth are destroyed by bacteria because the receding gums leave them exposed. This can cause your teeth to shift or loosen and can affect your bite. If aggressive treatment can’t save them, the loose teeth may need to be extracted.

Gum Disease Treatment in Prescott

As a holistic dental practice, our team at Prescott Dentistry wants you to understand that your gum health plays a significant role in your overall health. The good news is that gum disease can be easily prevented with good oral hygiene practices and early gum disease can be reversed with regular professional cleanings. If you are concerned about any of these signs of gum disease, reach out and make an appointment today. Let us help you keep your smile healthy and beautiful for years to come. Stay tuned for our next blog post on the treatment of gum disease. 

Image by melancholiaphotography from Pixabay