Gum Disease 101

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Have you recently learned that you have gum disease? Don’t worry; you don’t have to fight this war alone. 47.2% of adults over 30 in the United States have been diagnosed with chronic periodontitis. Even more are in the initial stages of gum disease. Let’s talk about the causes, stages, and treatment of gum disease.

The chief cause of gum disease is plaque. This refers to that sticky, colorless film that forms on your teeth from the bacteria in your mouth. Plaque can be eliminated through daily oral hygiene practices. Otherwise, it hardens into tartar–also called calculus–which can only be removed by your dentist.

You may have heard gum disease referred to with different titles, such as periodontitis, periodontal disease or gingivitis. Did you know that these titles actually indicate the particular stage of gum disease?

Stage one is called gingivitis. Signs include swollen and bleeding gums, pain when eating, halitosis, and sensitive teeth. The good news is that during this phase gum disease can still be reversed since the bone and tissue most vital to rooting the teeth in your gums are not yet infected.

Periodontitis or periodontal disease signifies gum disease in its later stages, wherein sustaining bone and fibers are permanently damaged. In addition to the signs of gingivitis, periodontitis includes teeth feeling loose, changes in the bite, a change in the fit of partial dentures, and pus surrounding the teeth and gums.

The treatment Dr. James Feldman will endorse is determined by the stage of your gum disease. Through careful and consistent oral hygiene and diligent dental appointments, gingivitis can be defeated. Periodontal disease will likely require scaling, root planing or in some cases gum surgery to stop its progression.

To learn more, simply ring Feldman Dentistry in Washington, DC at 202-362-8412. Dr. James Feldman and our excellent team can help return your smile to its former glowing health.

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