For some people, the threat of gum disease seems like a distant one; something they may have to worry about someday, but probably not right now. Unfortunately, that belief is why many people develop the condition before they realize it, and eventually require periodontal therapy to restore the health of their gums and smile. Today, we explore how gum disease often becomes a threat without causing much fanfare, and what you should do if you notice the early signs of its development.
When Gum Disease Becomes a Threat
The sticky film of dental plaque that builds up on your teeth is a combination of several different ingredients, including saliva, leftover food particles, and hundreds of kinds of oral bacteria. The film protects the microbes as they grow and multiply, and in some cases, the bacteria will work their way underneath your gums. The infection that results, known as gingivitis, is the beginning of gum disease, and can be detected by the swelling, redness, and occasional bleeding of your gums.
What to Do When It Shows Up
You might notice a little bit of blood mixed with your saliva when you brush your teeth, or we might detect the symptoms of gingivitis during your routine dental checkup and cleaning. In any case, once the condition is present, immediate treatment becomes vital to overcoming gum disease, and possibly preventing it.
For early cases of gingivitis, we can remove the infection by carefully cleaning the bacteria from underneath your gums, then smoothing your teeth’s roots to inhibit future bacteria buildup (scaling and root planing). Periodontal therapy may also include antibiotics to actively fight harmful bacteria, as well as more frequent dental checkups and cleanings.
ABOUT YOUR DES MOINES, IA, DENTIST:
Dr. Burds and his team focus the care they provide on enhancing every aspect of your dental health. To schedule an appointment, call Gateway Dental Group at (515) 244-9565. Located in Des Moines, IA, we proudly welcome patients from River Bend, Kirkwood Glen, East Village, and all surrounding communities.