What Is Periodontal Disease?

by | Feb 15, 2017 | Oral Health

Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you and an important part of your self-esteem. But your smile is about more than how it looks. The health of your smile should be a priority as well. You may notice if you chip a tooth, but other oral health issues don’t always make themselves known. Periodontal disease is often a silent issue that doesn’t present symptoms until some damage has already been done. According to a recent CDC report, 47.2% of adults aged 30 years and older have some form of periodontal disease. This is why it is important to visit your Newtown, PA cosmetic dentist Dr. Robert Lantzy for regular dental visits and to make your oral health a priority.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease occurs when bacteria attaches to plaque that is not removed by daily brushing and flossing. If plaque is not removed it can turn into tartar, this allows the bacteria to attack the support structure and the gums around the teeth, causing chronic inflammation. Periodontal disease is often a silent condition. If you ignore your oral health and you have not visited the dentist for a while this could be wrecking your oral health. Oftentimes, by the time that you encounter symptoms, some damage may already have occurred. There is also growing research about the connection or possible link between periodontal disease and other chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, as well as stroke and adverse pregnancy outcomes.

What Are The Symptoms of Periodontal Disease?

While periodontal disease does not always present with symptoms, especially at the early stages, there are certain things that you should be on the lookout for including:

  • red or swollen gums
  • gums that bleed easily (after brushing or flossing)
  • bad breath that doesn’t go away
  • teeth that are loose
  • receding gums

Ignoring these symptoms can have an adverse effect on the health of your smile, potentially leading to more serious complications including loose teeth and possible tooth loss. If you have experienced any of these symptoms, it is best not to ignore them. It is important to visit Dr. Lantzy, your cosmetic dentist in Newtown, PA so that he can evaluate your condition and determine an appropriate course of action.

After a comprehensive evaluation, Dr. Lantzy may determine that a prophylaxis or cleaning is appropriate. This is done to guard against gingivitis, an early form of gum disease. This cleaning will remove plaque and bacteria near the gumline that is causing irritation. If the periodontal disease is more advanced, a periodontal cleaning may be needed to clean below the gumline and remove bacteria that can damage the supporting bone structure.

Dr. Lantzy, your Newtown, PA cosmetic dentist, will work with you to develop a plan to halt the condition. This may include a recommitment on your part to an oral health routine, such as daily brushing and flossing, as well as a monitoring system to detect progress in follow-up visits. Ultimately, a preventive focus on periodontal disease will necessitate fewer treatments in the future as well as increased oral health and a prevention of the adverse side effects of this condition.