Did you know that most of the population of the world (80%) has gum disease? Most of them are not even aware of it. Not only is this putting their teeth at risk, but also their overall health.
Gum disease is also known as periodontal disease and it’s when the gums that surround one to two teeth become infected with bacteria. Although gum disease is unlikely to cause any sort of discomfort at first, it does produce detectable symptoms in its early stages. It will eventually get to the point where it produces significant problems for your oral health and overall health. Studies have shown links between periodontal disease and other diseases and conditions like heart disease, stroke, and autoimmune disorders as well as pregnancy complications. Periodontal disease can even increase your risk of certain cancers and cause complications with diabetes.
If you think you might have gum disease, it’s important to visit your dentist at Smile On Dental Studio for treatment as soon as possible. Please call (314) 678-7876 today for an appointment with Dr. Chris Hill.
Gum Disease Symptoms
As we noted, there are symptoms you can detect early on, but they can be subtle at first. The sooner you recognize them, the better your treatment options. Here are symptoms ranked roughly from mild to severe:
- Red, inflamed gums
- Tender gums
- Gums that bleed when you brush
- Food gets stuck between teeth and gums
- Gums that bleed spontaneously
- Tooth sensitivity
- Receding gums (teeth seem to get longer)
- Teeth start to shift
- Loose teeth
- Tooth loss
Not everyone experiences all symptoms, but if you suffer from one or more items on this list, you should make an appointment soon.
The Dangers of Gum Disease
Although we already touched on a few of the problems associated with gum disease, it’s important to take time to understand the risks. Since periodontal disease infects the gums around your teeth it can damage the gums and bone that support your teeth. Over time, your teeth can become loose, drift to a new position, or even fall out. Periodontal disease is actually one of the leading causes of tooth loss in Americans.
Unfortunately, the dangers don’t stop in your mouth. Since it’s a chronic infection, it’s not unheard of for your gum infection to spread bacteria throughout the rest of your body like your lungs or heart. Gum disease can also contribute to arterial plaque that may cause heart attacks.
A chronic state of inflammation occurs when you have gum disease. This can actually contribute to your risk of autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis or increase your risk of cancer. Lastly, gum disease may also disable your immune system with bacteria. This can prevent your body from recognizing and attacking small tumors, significantly increasing your risk of tumor growth.
The dangers are so much more than losing your teeth: they harm your entire overall health. Dr. Chris Hill at Smile On Dental Studio is here to help you achieve optimal gum health.
Who’s at Risk?
There are certain people who have a higher risk.
Factors that increase periodontal disease risk:
- Tobacco use
- Hormone problems
- Certain medications
- Teeth grinding
- Immune system problems
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Poor oral hygiene
If any of these risk factors apply to you, it’s more important than ever to take preventive care seriously. Make sure you brush your teeth and floss twice a day in addition to seeing the dentist regularly or every 6 months for a dental exam.
Periodontal Disease Treatment in St. Louis
If you suspect you have gum disease, please schedule a consultation with Dr. Chris Hill. We will help diagnose which stage of gum disease you have to come up with a treatment plan. Early-stage treatments include improving your home hygiene routine, increasing the frequency of your regular visits, scaling and root planing, medication, and irrigation of gum pockets. If these treatments aren’t effective, we may need to use more aggressive treatments like surgery. To treat your gum disease, we use advanced technology like the DIAGNOdent laser to make your treatment least invasive as possible.
Gum Disease Surgical Treatments
When periodontal disease evolves to the advanced stages, sometimes surgery is the only treatment option that remains. At Smile On Dental Studio, we offer a selection of gum disease treatments but with complicated advanced cases, we will refer you to a specialist for surgical treatments.
Want to learn more or seek treatment for yours? Please contact our dentist in St. Louis by calling (314) 678-7876 for a consultation. It’s important to take preventive care seriously to prevent gum disease from occurring. Preventive care is the best way to protect your teeth and overall health.
Gum disease is a serious problem that shouldn’t be taken lightly. If you have tender, bleeding gums, visit Smile On Dental Studio for treatment.