How serious is periodontal gum disease? While some people may think Periodontal gum disease is not as severe as it sounds, the truth is that it can cause more damage to your oral health and your entire body in general if not taken care of immediately.
Though very common, periodontal disease is actually preventable and also treatable. To reduce your risks of developing this dental menace, brushing and flossing your teeth and going for regular checkups can go a long way to ensure just that. If you’re still not sure of how serious this disease is, then continue reading this article to find out.
This disease primarily occurs due to inflammation or infection of the gums and bones surrounding and supporting your teeth. During the early stages of the infection or rather the inflammation, your gums may become red, swollen, and very sensitive.
Remember that in this early form, the disease is usually referred to as gingivitis. It is in its advanced form that it’s referred to as periodontitis.
In such a situation, your gums may pull away from your teeth; you’re also at risk of losing your teeth easily as a result of gradual loosening from the gums. Periodontal diseases are most common in adults, and together with tooth decay, they are the biggest dental threat to oral health.
According to a recent CDC report, data showing the prevalence of Periodontitis in the United States is as follows;
- Periodontitis is more progressive with age and about 70% of adults aged 65 years have this oral disease.
- About 48% of adults aged 30 and above have some form of periodontal gum disease.
Men are more likely to develop this oral illness than women –56% of men against 38% of women. Regarding the percentage of the entire population of adults at risk, current smokers are 64.2%, individuals living below the federal poverty line are 65.4%, while those with low standards of school education stand at 67%.
To know for sure the extent of dental damage periodontitis can have on your oral health, it’s crucial to get the full deets on the various stages of this gum disease as follows.
As previously pointed out, such inflammation is commonly referred to as gingivitis. One likely sign of gingivitis is bleeding gums when brushing your teeth. Additionally, you should beware of flossing as it can also cause bleeding.[ Also check out Prodentim: Why is this the number one oral health supplement?
Plaque or teeth discoloration is also a sign to watch out for. Plaque usually comes from the gradual build-up of food debris on the teeth. Note that there are both good and bad bacteria in your mouth. Despite this, the multiplication of bad bacteria in the mouth is influenced by harmful conditions. This usually occurs when you don’t floss, brush, or get a regular dental check-up.
- Early Periodontal Disease
As already mentioned, the early stages of periodontal gum disease are accompanied by receding gums or gums pulling away from the teeth and the formation of small pockets between the teeth and the gums—these pockets house harmful bacteria. Your gum tissue will start receding, and as you brush or floss, you’ll bleed and, most likely, experience bone loss.
- Moderate Periodontal Gum Diseases
Once the gum disease reaches this stage, not only will you experience bleeding gums but also pain due to the receding gums. As a result, your teeth start losing bone and continue loosening. Moreover, the infection will develop into inflammation, whose response may spread throughout the body.
- Advanced Periodontal Gum Disease
At this stage, the disease has caused significant damage to your dental status. And so, the tissues, vessels, gums, and bones holding your teeth in place start to deteriorate. This might come accompanied by pain when chewing, foul taste in the mouth, and bad breath. In addition, you’re also likely to lose teeth.
- Causes of Periodontal Gum Disease
One significant cause of Periodontal gum disease is plaque. In addition, other prominent factors that may cause periodontal gum disease include;
- Bad habits: smoking is a primary propellant of this dental disease. Generally, smoking prevents or slows down the healing of gum tissues.[Read: Is Prodentim Oral Care Fake Or Real Supplement?]
- Other medical conditions: if you have an illness, it may also be a contributing factor that propels periodontal disease at its early stage. Such illnesses include cancer, and HIV/AIDS, which essentially interfere with the immune system. A disease such as diabetes limits the body from using sugar properly. That’s why people ailing from diabetes are at a higher risk of developing periodontal gum disease and cavities.
- Medications: your current medication may also be behind the cause and progression of your periodontal gum disease. In addition to compromising oral health, some may even lessen saliva flow in your mouth. Drugs like Dilantin (an anticonvulsant), Procardia, and Adalat can potentially cause abnormal gum tissue growth.
- Poor Oral Habits: failure to brush or floss daily is the leading cause of periodontal gum disease. Gradual build-up of food debris on the teeth and plaque formation will eventually cause gingivitis.
Symptoms of Periodontal gum disease vary depending on the stages. Below are the general tell-tell signs to look out for;
- Loosening and position change of the teeth.
- Receding gums
- Bad breath
- Gums become tender, red, and swollen
- Tooth loss
- The inflammatory response throughout the entire body
- Blending gums when flossing or brushing
- Foul mouth taste.
- Pain while chewing, taking cold or hot drinks.
From constant pain to inflammatory response throughout your body, this proves just how severe this disease can be and how much damage it can cause.
If you have periodontal gum disease, it’s essential you see your periodontist or dentist regularly. Most importantly, you’ll have to ensure to brush at least twice daily and also floss regularly to prevent food debris build-up.
To eradicate this oral disease, the CDC, in partnership with the American Dental Association and the American Academy of Periodontology, has set measures to surveil periodontal gum disease in the US adult population.
This is done by improving examination protocols and screening for the disease. Since periodontal gum disease has become a national concern, it’s imperative you take the necessary precautions to shield you