Do your gums bleed when you brush or floss your teeth?
Bleeding gums are a common symptom of a bacterial infection known as periodontal disease. Gum disease is a progressive disease that goes through several phases of development. Gum disease frequently goes undiagnosed until the later stages when the teeth and gums have already become compromised.
Dr. Srikureja screens for gum disease during routine dental health exams as part of our comprehensive oral health care. Catching gum disease in its earliest stage can allow for conservative treatment options like a deep cleaning procedure called scaling and root planing. More advanced gum disease may require more extensive treatment such as laser therapy or oral surgery.
Do I have Gum Disease?
Nearly 70% of American Adults have some stage of gum disease.
Gum disease is a very common dental concern. Patients of all ages could develop gum disease, but it is most prevalent in adult patients. Gum disease is progressive and worsens if left untreated.
Gum disease is a leading cause of tooth loss.
Treating gum disease is essential for the prevention of secondary oral health complications. Gum disease causes gums to become inflamed. Swollen and sensitive, the gum line can peel back from the teeth leaving roots exposed, allowing teeth to shift or fall out. Patients should seek professional medical attention for gum disease at the first signs of the disease.
Patients who have gum disease may experience:
- Bleeding gums
- Swollen, tender gums
- White or red patches on their gums
- Change in the fit of an oral appliance
- Tooth sensitivity
Left unchecked disease-causing bacteria can enter the bloodstream. At this stage of periodontal disease patients are at a higher risk of developing systemic complications. Studies show that patients with advanced gum disease experience higher instances of severe medical conditions.
Gum disease is believed to increase the risk of:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Heart attacks
Gum Disease Prevention
Gum disease is most commonly caused by years of poor oral hygiene.
The best way to manage gum disease is through preventative measures such as routine dental health exams and good at home oral hygiene. Brushing twice a day and flossing at least once removes food debris from the teeth and helps to keep oral bacteria in check. Routine professional teeth cleanings help to remove plaque and tartar buildup, the ideal breeding grounds for disease-causing bacteria. Biannual teeth cleanings also allow Dr. Srikureja to notice any early signs of gum disease providing for more effective treatment.
Dr. Srikureja is also trained in laser therapy. Laser therapy is a state of the art technology that in many cases can eliminate the need for gum surgery in advanced cases of periodontal disease. Laser therapy eliminates bacteria pockets and actually stimulates the natural healing process. Laser treatment is minimally invasive and requires no sutures or long downtimes.
During your routine dental exams, Dr. Srikureja and our dental care team can make personalized recommendations for improving your oral health. Our team can make suggestions on better brushing techniques, and may suggest anti-bacterial mouth rinses.