Gum disease, also known as periodontitis, is a chronic bacterial infection of the jaw bone and teeth. At Kedron Family Dental, our Brisbane periodontists can identify the early stages of gum disease and assign effective treatments to prevent the problem from worsening in the future.
The Causes of Gum Disease
Harmful bacteria grow and multiply in a colourless, sticky film called “plaque” that naturally forms on the teeth, particularly around and under the gum line. If not removed daily through flossing and brushing, plaque begins to accumulate and causes the gums to become inflamed, swollen, and more prone to bleeding. These are the symptoms of gingivitis.
Untreated gingivitis can quickly deteriorate into periodontitis. Periodontitis has similar symptoms to gingivitis, but the main difference is that the structures surrounding the tooth start to break down. The bone supporting the tooth begins to erode and it forms a periodontal pocket, which is a gap between the gum and the tooth that becomes increasingly difficult to clean.
The bacteria start to move deeper down and thrive in this pocket, causing the attachment of the tooth and its supporting tissues to break down. The ultimate outcome can be tooth loss.
Signs to Watch Out For
If you notice any of these signs, make an appointment with your local dentist in Brisbane to rectify the issue. Symptoms include:
- Bleeding, swollen or receding gums
- Bad breath
- An unpleasant taste in your mouth
- Tenderness when biting
- Loose or moved teeth
The best way to prevent periodontitis is by effective and regular plaque removal. This can be achieved by brushing, flossing and using interdental brushes daily. Regular professional cleans are also important in the fight against gum disease.
Most patients should make an appointment at least once every six months to help prevent this infection. Your dental specialist will instruct you of the best oral health plan for your individual needs.
Treatment Plans for Gum Disease
If you do have active periodontitis, you may require multiple appointments with our Oral Health Specialists for a series of deep, professional cleans. The aim of these appointments is similar to a regular, 6-monthly clean; however, only a section of the mouth is cleaned at a time due to the large amount of tartar in deep periodontal pockets.
All tartar and plaque need to be thoroughly removed from under the gum to allow for proper healing and the stabilisation of gum disease. If you require this treatment or a referral to a gum specialist, our dentists will discuss it with you in detail.
Step One: Organise a Check-Up
The first thing to do is organise a check-up with Kedron Family Dental. Early treatment can help to save teeth affected by gum disease, so make an appointment by calling (07) 4736 8106 or by contacting us online.