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What Are the Stages of Gum Disease?

May 14, 2018
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Gum disease is caused by a buildup of bacteria along and underneath the gingival tissue (your gums). If treated during the earliest stage of gum disease, known as gingivitis, mild inflammation can be reversed. Ignoring a bacterial infection and allowing it to progress can lead to the destruction of the gum tissue and the underlying jawbone. The loss of these supportive structures can eventually lead to tooth loss. Advanced gum disease can also put you at higher risks for health problems affecting the rest of your body.

Earliest: Gingivitis

Gingivitis can be easy for you to overlook. The sneakiness of this disease’s development gives it the potential to be dangerous.The most effective form of treatment at this early stage is good oral hygiene and a professional cleaning. A deeper periodontal cleaning may be recommended to remove plaque and tartar accumulations underneath the gums.

Early and Moderate Periodontitis

When left untreated, simple gingivitis can advance into early periodontal disease. Early periodontitis is marked by inflamed gum tissue. The gums may begin to pull away from the teeth, which is known as gum recession. At this stage, your gums may bleed more readily during cleanings or your home hygiene. Neglected early periodontitis can progress into moderate periodontitis, where moderate levels of bone loss can occur. While the other stages are not marked by much pain, pain may begin to be felt as gum recession can make the teeth sensitive and uncomfortable. Teeth can loosen as the gums recede more.

Advanced Periodontitis

By the time advanced periodontitis sets in, there may be severe pain when chewing or biting and chronic bad breath. Tooth loss is more likely to occur due to the deep pockets, and the other teeth can begin to shift. Oral infections can begin to spread through your bloodstream to start causing an inflammatory response throughout your body increasing your risks for heart disease, diabetes, and other health issues.

Preventing and Managing Gum Disease Are Important to Your Health

Gum disease can be damaging to both your oral and overall health. To schedule a consultation with our experts, call Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry of Kansas City, MO, today at 816-427-4018.