The Dangers of Gum Disease

Elderly man gets a dental exam to check for gum disease.
An elderly man gets a dental exam. Caption: Regular exams will identify gum disease in the early stages

Proper dental care for your teeth and gums can prevent health problems and prevent serious and painful dental treatments. If you are seeking gum disease treatment, prevention, and control, please contact us at Dental Partners of Boston.

What is Gum Disease?

Bacteria naturally occurs in the mouth, but an overgrowth can lead to tooth decay, which can then cause infection in the gums. If these infections progress without treatment, gum disease, also known as Periodontal Disease will set in. Bacteria builds up in between and around the bases of your teeth, creating plaque. Hardened plaque is only removable during a professional dental cleaning. Plaque is the first indication that a serious condition may be developing.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms?

If you notice that your gums have become red, swollen, and are painful in one or more areas in your mouth, it is likely that you have developed the most common form of gum disease: gingivitis. Sometimes your gums will bleed during your regular brushing and flossing routines. Gingivitis is reversable with a thorough cleaning, excellent home care habits, and regular visits to our office for cleanings and exams. Correcting this condition in time will prevent the disease’s progression into serious infections and periodontal disease.

Am I At Risk for Gum Disease?

For some, there are certain risk factors that increase the chances that you will develop gum disease, especially if we aren’t able to intervene in the early stages. For example:

  • Smoking: Smoking leads to a number of oral health conditions, and it affects your whole body wellness. Smoking has serious repercussions on your oral health, not only staining the teeth but causing gum recession which undermines the connective tissues that anchor your teeth in your jaw. Gum disease is a danger, as is tooth loss.
  • Hormonal Changes: When the body goes through normal changes such as puberty, pregnancy and breast-feeding, and aging, there is often a shift in oral health as the body adapts.
  • Diabetes: Diabetic people are generally at high risk for infections and illnesses, and this goes for oral health issues as well. Well-controlled diabetes lessens the changes, but if diabetes is poorly controlled, gum disease is likely to develop.
  • Medication: A common side effect of certain medications is known as dry-mouth. The lack of saliva can cause an overgrowth of bacteria, making the mouth vulnerable to infection and gum disease.

What Can I Do?

If you are concerned about gum disease, please call our office today to schedule an appointment. We will conduct a thorough exam and recommend a course of action to correct and prevent gum disease.


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