Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease, and it precedes the more serious form known as periodontitis. However, it is important to note that not all gingivitis will progress to periodontitis, and you can take steps to reverse it. When you take action, you can stop the gum disease progression pattern in its track.
What is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease that involves buildup of plaque and bacteria. When these substances accumulate, the gums become irritated and inflamed. They may bleed easily when you brush your teeth, but despite this irritation, the teeth remain rooted firmly in their sockets.
What Happens if Gingivitis isn't Treated?
If you don't treat your gingivitis, the disease will progress to periodontitis. This is where the long-term and irreversible damage occurs. The inner layer of the gum tissue and bone will pull away from the teeth, creating pockets. These tiny spaces between the gums and teeth can collect debris, and they can become infected. As the disease get worse, the pockets will deepen, destroying gum tissue and the underlying jawbone. As a result, the teeth may become loose, as the tissues that hold them into place are destroyed. This can eventually cause tooth loss.
Can the Pattern Be Stopped? The good news is that in the early stages of gum disease, the issue can be reversed. Proper control of plaque is essential, and this involves daily brushing and flossing. An antibacterial mouth rinse may be helpful in reducing bacteria that cause gum disease and plaque, and regular dental cleanings are essential in removing plaque and tartar from the teeth.
Don't let gum disease affect your oral health or leave you with tooth loss. Be sure to visit our office at least once every six months for optimal oral health. Call us today to set up your appointment.