Periodontal (Gum) Disease
Periodontal disease (or gum disease) is a leading cause of tooth loss. The disease often advances slowly and painlessly meaning that damage occurs to the structures supporting teeth (gum and bone) without it being noticed until the disease is well established.
Gum disease can be preventable and treated, particularly if detected early on.
We offer direct access to our dental hygienists which means you don't need to be referred by a dentist or be registered with us, you can see our hygienists at a time which suits you.
Plaque is bacteria, which, over time can harden up turning into more stubborn calculus or 'tartar'. This bacteria causes a low grade inflammatory response in the bone and gum around teeth. The inflammation can cause different symptoms depending on how your body reacts to the plaque bacteria. Commonly, the inflammation can cause red or bleeding gums, gum recession (which leads to sensitivity), loose or drifting teeth, discharge from the gums and eventually tooth loss.
The most important way to mange gum disease is to manage the plaque bacteria. Gum disease will not advance if there is no plaque bacteria. This is something we can work with you to achieve but home maintenance is essential. We can show you techniques to clean around your teeth more effectively and review you on a regular basis to ensure that the gum disease is stabilising. If you smoke, you are more likely to lose teeth through gum disease - we strongly suggest if you want to keep your teeth you stop smoking.
Losing teeth through gum disease is not inevitable, however, different people react to plaque bacteria in different ways and there is a large genetic component to the disease process. Pyorrhoea is an old term for gum disease and you may be aware of a family history of losing teeth through gum problems. There are also links between gum disease and diabetes - it is important to update your dentist and hygienist of any changes to your medical history.
More information about periodontal disease can be accessed from the British Society of Periodontology's website.
At Kingston Park Advanced Dentistry, we can work with you to help manage your teeth and gums and reduce the risk of them dropping out. Please don't hesitate to ask your dentist or hygienist if you have any unanswered questions.