Gum disease – also known as gingivitis or periodontal disease – is a common dental problem that affects as many as 50% of adults. Aside from pain, sensitivity, and discomfort, gum disease may cause bad breath, bleeding, and swelling of the gums, and if left untreated – can also cause tooth loss.
So gum disease presents a significant risk to your dental health and is often the first step towards more serious, long-term dental issues. But perhaps more worryingly, recent research also suggests a link between gum disease and heart disease.
While the cause-and-effect relationship is not yet clear, scientists believe that the inflammation caused by gum disease may increase the risk of heart disease, strokes, and exacerbate other heart conditions. One study suggested that those who received proper treatment for gum disease reduced the cost of their future cardiovascular care by 10%-40%.
Many people are living with gum disease and are either not aware of it, or do not recognize the symptoms. But if left untreated, gum disease is likely to worsen and put your health at higher risk. So if you suspect you may be suffering from gum disease, it is vital to seek professional treatment as soon as possible.
What Is Gum Disease?
Your mouth is home to many different types of bacteria, many of which are completely normal and harmless. But if left to build up, bacteria will start to form plaque, which can irritate your gums. This irritation causes swelling and can damage the surrounding tissue, eventually causing gum disease and tooth decay.
What Are the Signs of Gum Disease?
The first signs of gum disease are red, swollen, and bleeding gums.
As the infection progresses and gets deeper into your gums, you may also experience chronic bad breath, receding gums, tooth sensitivity, increasing pain while chewing, and loose teeth.
If left untreated, periodontal disease can lead to the loss of bone and eventually, tooth loss.
If you have any of these symptoms or haven’t had a dental check-up in a while, make an appointment now to see if you require treatment.
Treating Gum Disease
Thanks to the advanced gum treatments our periodontists offer, Dental Partners of Boston can help you control and even reverse the effects of periodontal disease. In the early stages, gum disease treatment may be fairly simple. In later stages, treatments become more involved.
Here are some of the periodontal treatments we offer at Dental Partners of Boston:
- Root planing and scaling
- Soft tissue grafting
- Bone grafting
- LANAP: Laser Assisted New Attachment Procedure
Treat Gum Disease, Help Prevent Heart Disease
With proper treatment, gum disease can be significantly improved or cleared up completely, and this may reduce risk to your heart’s health. However, the more prolonged gum disease is allowed to progress, the more significant risk it poses, both to your overall dental health and to your wider physical health.
So if you suspect you may be suffering from gum disease or would like to schedule a routine check-up, get in touch with us today.