Periodontal disease, more commonly referred to as gum disease, is one of the most common oral and overall health issues that affects US adults. In fact, studies show that more than half of patients over the age of thirty experience some level of periodontal disease, whether it’s the mild form (gingivitis) or the more advanced form (periodontitis). Additionally, gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among patients over the age of 35.
HOW TO DIAGNOSE GUM DISEASE?
In many cases, periodontal disease goes undiagnosed. We encourage patients to contact our team to find out more or schedule an appointment if you experience any of the following warning signs of gum disease:
• Bleeding in the gums while flossing, brushing, or chewing
• Swollen or discolored soft tissue
• Teeth that suddenly appear longer (a common sign of gum recession)
• Sores or infections at the gum line
• Bad taste in the mouth or chronic bad breath
• Teeth that feel loose or a bite that does not fit together properly
If we diagnose patients with gum disease, Dr. Shelton offers a variety of periodontal therapies to renew oral health and prevent any additional damage. During the earliest form (gingivitis), we may be able to undo any damage with more frequent professional teeth cleanings and improved at-home dental hygiene. As gingivitis progresses into the more severe periodontitis, we may need to provide more advanced treatments such as scaling and root planing. Scaling is the systematic removal of plaque, tartar, and damaged tissues, to prevent further buildup of gum disease. Topical antibiotics or laser therapy are other means of treatment provided to prevent the recurrence of gum disease