- February 1, 2017
Quick! What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the words ‘gum disease’?
If you’re like many people, you might have spent the last few seconds trapped in a toothless nightmare of scary images. You wouldn’t necessarily be wrong.
But did you know that not all gum disease has to end in tooth loss? That’s right. You can actually prevent, and even reverse, gum disease if you know how to spot it and what to do about it.
So before you toss out that unopened heart-shaped box full of candy and run to the bathroom to brush your teeth for the second time this morning, let’s go back to basics. February is Gum Disease Awareness month, after all!
What Is it?
Gum disease refers to the effects of plaque buildup on your teeth over time if left untreated. You could have gum disease and not even know it, especially since plaque is colorless at first. It’s not time to panic, though.
Basically, there are three levels, or stages, of gum disease: gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. To truly understand what gum disease is, it helps to look at how it develops.
Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease. The All Can Still Be Forgiven stage. This is where plaque builds up on your teeth and starts creeping toward your gum line. The bacteria in plaque settles in between your teeth and causes inflammation.
You might notice redness, swelling, or tenderness around your gums at this early stage. Another indication of gingivitis is bleeding when you brush or floss your teeth.
Gingivitis is the easiest stage to treat and reverse. The best way to do that is by maintaining proper oral hygiene at home with daily brushing and flossing and scheduling regular checkups with our team at Clear Lake Dental Care! Call us today at 281-500-9877 to schedule an appointment or fill out our online form.
Periodontitis is the next stage of gum disease, and it can cause irreversible damage to the structure surrounding the teeth if left untreated. Once gum disease has reached this stage, you will definitely need to call us at Clear Lake Dental Care.
Our highly trained hygienists can give you the professional deep cleaning you need to treat the buildup underneath the gumline. When you call Clear Lake Dental for an appointment, be sure to ask us about our other nonsurgical gum disease treatment options!
Advanced periodontitis is the third and most severe stage of gum disease. At this point, the supporting bone and tissue surrounding a tooth has become compromised, and in many cases, infected.
Teeth can shift or even become loose, making extraction a very real possibility. Remember those toothless images you had at the beginning of reading this?
Now that you’re more aware of what gum disease is and what it can do, you’re in a much better place to prevent, and perhaps, combat it. Keep up those excellent daily oral hygiene habits like brushing and flossing, and check your calendar to see if it’s time for a cleaning!
What you should NOT do, however, is self-diagnose when it comes to your oral health. Gum disease can be sneaky. Only a professional can properly diagnose gum disease and has the tools necessary to treat it.
We don’t expect you to reverse the effects of gum disease by yourself. We are here to help you!
Even if you have been affected by periodontitis, Clear Lake Dental Care offers hope.
Gum recession is a visible effect of gum disease, and one of the ways to correct that is through gum grafting. The good news about this procedure is, like many of our services at Clear Lake Dental Care, we can do this in-house!
With us, you don’t have to worry about going outside of our office, spending more time on appointments, seeing other specialists. Here, we ARE the specialists! We can give you expertise AND convenience so that any procedures you need can be done all in one place.
Thanks to our skilled, experienced, and caring dentists, we can give you options when something like gum disease has robbed you of a healthy, beautiful smile. Call us today at 281-500-9877 to schedule an appointment or fill out our online form.
The more you know about your gums, the better you can love them!