3 Things To Know About Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease occurs when your gums became inflamed and infected. According to the CDC, nearly half of all adults that are 30 years and older have some form of gum disease, which is another name for periodontal disease. The number of adults with periodontal disease increases with age. Some people are more likely to get periodontal disease. These people include men, smokers, and those who live in poverty.

To better understand this oral health issue, here are three things to know about periodontal disease.

1. Know What Causes Periodontal Disease

Bacteria, plaque, and tartar are all things that can wreak havoc on the teeth and gums. When a person has poor oral hygiene, and they don't brush or floss as they should, they won't be able to effectively remove bacteria, plaque, or tartar from their teeth.

Eventually, the buildup of plaque and tartar affects the gum tissue. When this happens, it's called gingivitis. It's at this stage you should see a dentist so that the gingivitis can be treated. If the problem is not resolved, the gingivitis will turn into periodontal disease.

2. Know What Complications Result From Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease causes a variety of unpleasant symptoms. These symptoms include:

  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Bad breath
  • Receding gums
  • Loose teeth

Along with these symptoms, periodontal can cause other kinds of complications. In fact, it might surprise you to know that a problem with your oral health could affect the rest of your body.

According to some health experts, untreated periodontal disease has been linked to over 120 medical conditions. A few of these medical conditions include cardiovascular disease, diabetes, asthma, Alzheimer's, and cancer. For women, periodontal disease has also been associated with premature labor.

3. Know How to Treat Periodontal Disease

If you have severe tartar buildup, your dentist will probably recommend you receive a professional cleaning. After the tartar is removed from your teeth, your gums will look pink and healthy instead of red and inflamed. Your dentist may recommend other kinds of treatment if you have a severe case of periodontal disease.

You may also need to use a prescription-strength mouth wash or take oral antibiotics so that the gums are no longer infected. If the dentist needs to get underneath the gum line in order to remove the tarter, you may need to undergo a surgical procedure called flap surgery. In some cases, the gum tissue may need to be regenerated, which can be helped along by a bone and tissue graft.