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2111 Phelps Pl. NW ~ Washington, D. C. 20008 ~ Phone: 202.265.0525     email us

Gum Disease: Serious But Treatable

Periodontal Disease is an infection of the teeth, gums, and bone surrounding the teeth. If you neglect to brush, floss, and stimudent regularly, plaque hardens and becomes more difficult to remove. Bacteria creates deeper spaces between teeth and gums leading to more serious complications that result in tooth and bone loss.

 Periodontal or gum disease is a major cause of tooth loss.

Warning Signs are:
1- Bleeding gums
2- Red, swollen gums
3- Tender gums
4- Pus between teeth and gums when pressing gums
5- Persistent bad bread
6- Bad taste in mouth
7- Permanent teeth that are loose
8- Change in the way your teeth fit together when biting
9- Changes in fit of partial dentures

Causes of Periodontal Disease
1- Plaque in the mouth
2- Bacteria in the mouth
3- Toxins in the mouth
4- Calculus
5- Tartar

Even when you brush and clean everyday, you may not completely remove plaque, especially around the gum line. Plaque that is not removed can harden into calculus or tartar. This can only be removed in the dental office. Tartar under the gumline creates conditions that lead to inflammation and infection.

Gum tissue is not attached to each tooth. A v shaped groove called the sulcus between teeth and healthy gums should be no more than three millimeters. If you have periodontal disease, this space develops into a pocket. If the disease is severe, the greater the dept of the pockets.

Periodontitis occurs when toxins destry the tissues that anchor teeth into bone. Then the gums detach from teeth and form pockets. Your tooth rots become susceptible to decay and sensitive to cold and touch. Usually tartar will form below the gums; this will inhibit the reattachment of gum tissue to the teeth. This creates a condition that delays healing and causes inflammation.

If much ligament and bone are destroyed, the tooth becomes unstable and it is loose in its socket. Eventually the tooth falls out or requires extraction.

Dental x-rays can be used to evaluate bone supporting the teeth.

If periodontal disease is present, Dr. Jeffrey Singer will recommend some of the following treatments for the problem: a thorough cleaning, scaling, tooth root planning, bite adjustment, gum surgery, bone surgery, grafts, splints, appliances for stabilization.

Factors that increase periodontal disease risk are smoking, chewing tobacco, malocclusion (misaligned teeth), fillings that are defective, clenching, grinding, poor diet, systemic diseases, steroids, cancer therapy drugs, some calcium channel blockers, oral contraceptives, other medications.

You will not lose teeth if you brush, floss, stimudent, eat a balanced diet, and schedule regular dental visits. 

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©2012 Jeffrey R. Singer D.D.S.