Don’t Be Another Gum Disease Statistic
- March 15, 2016
Nearly half of American adults over the age of 30 have advanced gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Knowing this, it’s easy to see why dentists and hygienists worry about what gum disease can do to our patients’ oral health. It can damage the bones the support your teeth, and gum disease has been tied to other health problems as well.
We don’t want any of our patients at Gentle Dental Care to suffer from gum disease, which is why we offer a variety of treatments depending on the severity of their condition.
If you are worried that you or someone in your family has advanced gum disease, please makes plans to visit our dentist in Plainville, CT, as soon as you are able.
Risks Of Untreated Gum Disease
Based on the CDC’s recent study, at least 65 million people have advanced gum disease in America. This is also known as periodontitis.
When you realize this study did not include gingivitis (a mild form of gum disease), you’ll understand why experts believe that up to 80 percent of the U.S. population has some form of periodontal disease.
In other words, you probably have gum disease, too.
This may be a little shocking unless you think about your dental care. The last time you came for a cleaning, did you dentist or hygienist ask about your flossing habits? This is probably because he or she noticed symptoms of gum disease during your visit.
Dental professionals don’t ask these questions to be judgmental. We ask out of concern for your oral health and your overall well-being.
Regular brushing and flossing need to be part of your daily routine. If you don’t do these things, you may start to see symptoms like:
- Red and swollen gums
- Gums that bleed easily
As you condition persists, the symptoms will get worse:
- Gums that feel sensitive or tender
- Gums that bleed even easier (like when you are eating)
- Receding gums (think of a receding hairline, then think of your gums doing that on your teeth)
- Pocket formation inside your gums
- Lingering bad breath
- A constant bad taste in your mouth
- Pus oozing from your gums
- Teeth that feel loose or shift easily
The pockets we mentioned allow bacteria, plaque, and tartar to build in places you can’t reach with brushing and flossing alone.
As the disease spreads, it can eat into your teeth, or it may eat into the bones that hold your teeth in place. If you allow it to go untreated, you may start losing teeth, too.
How To Treat Gum Disease
We hope you care enough about your oral health that you will not let your gums get into the condition we described above.
If you have noticed any of these symptoms, then we want you to get treated right away.
How do we treat gum disease? We have different options depending how much your periodontal disease has advanced.
If you visit our dentist office in Plainville, CT, for routine care, we have a better chance of catching your infection in the early stages. When we identify gum disease, our goal is to eradicate it sooner, not later.
Often our first step is a deep cleaning process called scaling and root planing. During this procedure, your dentist or hygienist will remove plaque, tartar, and bacteria that have grown at the roots of your teeth. We can apply a local anesthetic or use one of our dental sedation options to save you from any pain during this treatment.
Scaling and root planing involves scraping the roots of your teeth to remove the plaque and tartar buildup. The dentist or hygienist will smooth your teeth as well. This removes rough surfaces, which are good places for bacteria to hide.
If you have a live infection, we will give you antibiotics. These may be placed directly under or on your gums, or you make take any oral medication. In either case, our goal is to eliminate the bacteria that caused your infection.
In the most serious cases, we may recommend gum surgery instead.
One example of this is a gingivectomy. During this procedure, the dentist will remove gum tissue in order to get rid of any pockets in your gums.
Another example is a flap procedure. This is done to fix any damage to your supporting bone and to better clean the roots of your teeth.
We also may perform a gum grafts to replace the unhealthy gum tissue with healthy tissue from another part of your mouth.
Additional Health Risks
If keeping your teeth isn’t enough of a reason to keep your gums healthy, then here are few other facts to consider.
While the direct cause has not yet been determined, there is a strong correlation between gum disease and diabetes. The American Academy of Periodontologists have reported that people with diabetes have a higher risk of developing gum disease than the general population.
People with diabetes often suffer from dry mouth, which also increases your risk for gum disease. But this may be a two-way street, since gum disease can make it harder for you to control your blood sugar levels.
Heart disease and gum disease have been connected in other studies, and people with gum disease are more likely to develop certain forms of cancer. For instance, people with gum disease are 30 percent more likely to have blood cancers, 49 percent more likely to develop kidney cancer, and 54 percent more likely to have pancreatic cancer.
Don’t Wait Another Day
Don’t delay in getting help if you have symptoms of gum disease. If you live in or near Plainville, CT, the dental team at Gentle Dental Care wants to treat you problem.
Call 860-479-2397 or fill out an online form to make your appointment.