If you notice that your gums are bleeding after brushing, your teeth seem loose in your gums or your breath seems to always have a foul order, you may be dealing with gum disease. This condition may also be referred to as gingivitis in its earliest stages and periodontitis when it becomes more severe. While bad breath can be embarrassing, the real danger lies in the effect that gum disease can have on your mouth and the rest of your body.
Damage to Your Mouth
At first, gingivitis may simply cause a swollen, tender feeling in your gums. Left untreated, the condition quickly becomes more painful and causes inflammation throughout the mouth. As bacteria and infection work their way deeper into pockets between the teeth, you may notice loose or shifting teeth. Good oral hygiene like brushing twice a day, flossing once a day and seeing a dental professional regularly can help keep gum disease away, but it’s important to also visit a periodontist to keep your mouth healthy. Prevention is the best way to treat this condition, and a proactive approach increases chances of success.
Systemic Health Considerations
Although researchers are unaware of exactly how these conditions interact, gum disease has also been loosely linked to heart disease, diabetes, respiratory disease, cancer and osteoporosis. Recent research shows that the inflammation caused by the infection and bacteria may be most detrimental to the rest of the body. In this way, keeping your mouth healthy may also improve your quality of life and extend your lifespan.
What to Watch for
Most people focus on caring for their teeth without realizing that gums are just as important. If you are concerned that you have gum disease, watch for sensitive teeth, loose teeth, pain when eating or chewing, chronic bad breath, red or swollen gums, tender, bloody gums and areas in the mouth where the gums appear to pull back from the teeth.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. Vikram Gandhi, periodontist in Garland, TX, today for a check-up and care plan for your gums.