Periodontal disease is a problem with the gums and the bones that support the teeth. Your Colorado Springs dentist can help identify and treat gum disease.
What is periodontal disease?
One of the earliest signs of periodontal disease is red or bleeding gingival tissue (gums). If this is allowed to continue it may lead to periodontitis. Periodontitis is the loss of bone and supportive structures around the teeth. Most adult teeth are lost due to periodontal break down. It is important to keep gum tissues healthy to prevent this breakdown from occurring. Once bone is lost there is little we can do to get it back; it also becomes more difficult to properly clean because of the gaps that form between and around the teeth and under the gums. When we do an exam we measure these to determine if they are present, how deep they are, and are they worse than the last time we measured them. Once we know there is a problem there are treatments available to help stop the bone loss. We cannot regenerate bone. This is generally a painless and most patients do not even know when they have active periodontal disease.
What can you do to prevent periodontal disease?
The first step in preventing breakdown is to properly brush and floss. If the teeth and gums are kept clean there will be little if any chance of developing gingivitis. It is necessary to brush and floss morning and night. If any bleeding is noticed it is an indication that you need to brush and floss more often and more thoroughly and that you may need to have your teeth cleaned.
If calculus or tartar, the hard deposit that builds up on teeth, is left it too can cause gingivitis. It acts much like a piece of sandpaper would if it were wrapped around the tooth. This causes irritation by its roughness and the bacteria that are left in its irregularities. It is necessary to have this removed by a dentist or dental hygienist. It is impossible to remove this by brushing or flossing. It is possible, however, to prevent its formation by careful cleaning every day if the teeth are first professionally cleaned. Most patients need to get their teeth cleaned every 6 months. A few patients will need cleaning more often. If the calculus is left it will cause gingivitis which can then develop into periodontal disease.
If you are overdue for your cleaning, or if you notice bleeding when flossing, please call our dental office to set up your dental appointment.
6475 Wall St Suite 202
Colorado Springs, CO 80918