You’ve probably heard of gum disease. You probably know it can cause your gums to bleed, can result in swelling of your gums and can even cause bad breath – but do you know how serious it really is?
Most adults will experience gum disease at least once in their life. Thankfully, it can be treated quite easily by improving your home care routine, flossing regularly and using dentist-approved mouthwashes. However, some patients ignore the warning signs of gum disease, leaving the problem to get worse and resulting in periodontitis.
What is periodontitis?
The first stage of gum disease is called gingivitis and this can be treated by yourself at home or can be resolved through a professional clean and treatment from one of the Whitestar Dental team.
The second stage of gum disease is called periodontitis and requires much more attention. This is an advanced and serious form of gum disease, which can lead to a number of problems including infection.
Periodontitis attacks your gums and your jaw bone and as it advances, it can cause your teeth to loosen and fall out.
Other symptoms of periodontitis include:
- Swollen and tender gums
- Puffy gums
- Gums that move away from the teeth (or that recede)
- Formation of abscess on the gums
- Pus build-up between the teeth
- Bad breath
At Whitestar Dental, in Harrow, we can treat and manage periodontal disease to restore your teeth and gums back to health. However, we need your help. By working in partnership with us to keep your teeth and gums clean, you can avoid periodontal disease.
Are you at risk of periodontal disease?
To some extent, we are all at risk of gum disease – in fact it’s one of the most common diseases in the world.
However, if you don’t look after your teeth and neglect your oral hygiene you are increasing your risk of developing gum disease. As plaque builds up on the teeth and gum line, it can start to irritate and inflame the gums, resulting in gingivitis.
If this inflammation is left untreated, it can result in periodontal pockets forming between your teeth and gums. These pockets start to fill with bacteria and germs, which can become infected deep within the gum tissues and jaw bone. Chronic periodontitis can impact your general health and immune system.
Some people are more at risk of periodontal disease than others. We’ve outlined some of the ‘at risk’ groups below:
- Pregnant women
- People suffering from the following diseases: diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, Chron’s disease
- If you take medications which affect your immunity
- People lacking in vitamin C
- Obese people
Periodontal disease can result in the loss of your teeth. However, it can also cause general health complications as the bacteria which causes periodontitis can travel into the blood stream. It has been linked to various problems such as respiratory disease and coronary artery problems.
Preventing gum disease
Keeping your gums healthy should be a daily priority. We recommend brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing at least once a day. In addition, you can visit one of our helpful team at Whitestar Dental practice, in Harrow to thoroughly clean your teeth and gums – removing plaque build-up and reducing the likelihood of gum disease.
It’s also important to give up smoking – ask us for smoking cessation advice to improve your oral health.
At Whitestar Dental we make sure your smile is as healthy and bright as possible.
Call us now on 0208 427 1800 to book your next appointment. We see patients all over North West London, including Harrow and Stanmore.