Periodontal disease is an infection of the gum tissue that causes the mouth to become inflamed and can ultimately lead to tooth loss when the gums pull away from the roots of the teeth. One study estimated that nearly half of the adults in the United States have some form of periodontal disease, and if you are one of them it’s important to know how it might affect your mouth and your overall health.
Complications of Periodontal Disease
In its early stages, periodontal disease is generally free of serious complications. However, in the later stages it can lead to raw and painful gums, bleeding from the gums, and tooth loss. In fact, periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss among adults over the age of 35, leading to far more lost teeth than cavities.
Treating Periodontal Disease
Good oral health is the best way to prevent periodontal disease and keep disease in the early stages from getting worse. This includes daily brushing and flossing, regular dental visits, and the use of anti-bacterial mouthwash. However, once periodontal disease reaches the later stages, it should be treated by a periodontist. In some cases, antibiotics can be used, but in more advanced cases surgery may be necessary to replace missing teeth and repair gum tissue.
Periodontal Disease and Your Overall Health
There is a strong link between the health of your mouth and the health of the rest of your body. There is a strong correlation between periodontal disease and heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis. It is thought that this is because bacteria in the mouth can easily enter the bloodstream and travel to other areas of the body. Though the link is not yet well understood, treating periodontal disease may cause improvements in health in other areas of the body.
If you are worried about the health of your teeth and gums, contact the periodontist office of Dr. Paul Fotek to schedule a consultation and treat your periodontal disease in Palm Beach Gardens, FL today!