Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection of the structures supporting the teeth. The affected areas include the gums, alveolar bone, and the periodontal ligament.
Periodontal disease refers to a condition in which inflammation is noticed around the tooth. The disease is mainly caused due to formation of plaque and tartar on the surface of the teeth. It is a severe form of gingivitis (gum disease) and is marked by loss of attachment between the jawbone and the teeth. It damages the tissues and bone that hold the teeth.
Symptoms of this gum disease do not appear until the disease has progressed to the advanced stage. Abnormally bulging gums is a common symptom of this gum problem. The other few obvious warning signs of this disease are as follows:
- Swollen gums
- Persistent bad breath
- Gum bleeding
- Sores and pain in the mouth
- Loose teeth
- Bleeding, while brushing and eating hard food
- Pus observed between the gum and tooth
Poor oral hygiene
Ignoring oral health is considered to be the main reason behind the occurrence of this dental problem. Bacteria in our mouth are constantly forming a colorless, sticky film (plaque) on our teeth. If brushing and flossing is not done regularly, plaque gets accumulated, which hardens over time, to form bacteria-harboring tartar. Unfortunately, normal brushing cannot remove tartar. Only a professional dentist will be able to remove tartar.
People who smoke or chew tobacco have higher chances of developing this dental issue.
Patients suffering from gum diseases, or chronic ailments that affect the immune system, like diabetes, HIV, cancer, etc., are more susceptible to this dental problem.
There are certain drugs such as dilantin, used for treating seizures. Intake of dilantin tablets can negatively affect the gum tissue. Antidepressant drugs and oral contraceptives can also affect oral health.
In this procedure, the dentist uses instruments and ultrasonic apparatus for scraping the tartar and plaque that is formed on the surface of the tooth.
After the dentist scrapes the plaque from the tooth, the area is cleaned thoroughly to smoothen the rough spots of the teeth. This procedure ensures reattachment of the affected gums and eradication of bacteria, if any.
Dentists use medicines to control bacterial growth. These medicines are generally applied during and after non-invasive procedures. They are often placed on damaged gums, to suppress bacterial infections.
Surgical procedures such as, crown lengthening and soft tissue grafting may be recommended to treat periodontal disease. Dental surgery that involves removing the infected gum tissue is also effective to cure the condition.
Practicing good dental hygiene is the best and the most inexpensive way to prevent this gum disease. Brushing and flossing twice a day, is essential to maintain good dental health. You can also use tartar control toothpastes to prevent its buildup. Rinsing with mouthwashes, prescribed by the doctor, can also help to reduce bacteria in your mouth.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.