A serious infection of the gums
Periodontitis is also known as gum disease, but in a more extreme form. Periodontitis is a serious infection of the gums. The bacteria not only on your teeth but also below the gums. This is affecting the gums, root of the teeth and the structure which keeps your teeth attached to your jawbone. If left untreated this will lead to receding gums and the loss of teeth.
What is periodontitis?
Gingivitis is a common gum disease, but if gingivitis goes without treatment it can develop into periodontitis. Bacteria cover the teeth and gum. When bacteria enters the gum and attacks the root of the teeth and the periodontal structure it is called periodontitis. This will cause the inner layers of the gum to pull away from the teeth. The spaces created are called pockets. In these pockets food remains, debris and plaque will hide. Flossing and brushing aren’t enough to clean these pockets. This all leads up to receding gums and gum infections. All this will cause the pockets to enlarge and you risk of teeth falling out.
Symptoms of periodontitis
Your gums are important. It is important to recognize the symptoms of periodontitis. The signs and symptoms of periodontitis include:
- Bright red gums
- Sensitive gums
- Receding gums
- Swollen and inflamed gums
- Bleeding gums
- Bad breath
- A metallic taste in your mouth
- Pain while chewing
- Loose teeth
Unfortunately you might miss these symptoms if you are suffering from periodontitis in areas which are hard to see.
What causes periodontitis?
Like most dental issues periodontitis is caused by plaque. Bacteria build up to dental plaque. If oral health care is neglected plaque turns into tartar. Tartar allows bacteria to find its way to the roots of your teeth. Over time holes are formed between your teeth and gums. The space which is created are called pockets. In these pockets bacteria grows and grows. Since you are unable to reach these bacteria with your toothbrush or floss they can grow without harm. This will cause an enlargement of the pockets and will result in the loss of teeth.
The treatment of periodontitis focuses on the removal of tartar and bacterial plaque. Since you can’t reach all the plaque in your pockets a dental hygienist or preventive assistant is required. The periodontitis treatment includes:
- Teeth cleaning
- Oral health instructions
In order to remove the bacterial plaque and tartar the teeth will be professionally cleaned. It’s important to clean the pockets, since the biggest problem hides. Deep dental cleaning will clean the pockets in order for the healing to start. Deep teeth cleaning is performed with a scaling and root planing procedure. All bacteria, plaque and tartar is removed from the pockets, gums and teeth.
When your teeth are clean the preventive assistant informs you about the best methods to get optimal oral health. The oral health instructions show you how to reduce the number of bacteria in your mouth. A brush & floss instruction is shown by the preventive assistant to prevent the periodontitis from spreading.
In order to treat periodontitis a follow up appointment is necessary. The appointments will focus on the development of periodontitis. Are the pockets growing or shrinking? It’s possible additional deep dental cleaning is necessary.
Make an appointment online
Are you experiencing the symptoms of periodontitis? Please make an appointment online to get a diagnosis. It might just be gingivitis and if you are lucky you can prevent periodontitis by treating the gingivitis.