Types of Gum Diseases

dentists looking at patient xray

Dental health doesn’t stop at your teeth, your gums are just as important, if not more so since your teeth are also reliant on their condition. In order to keep your gums in tip-top shape, brushing and flossing are essential. But, what if that isn’t enough? Or, what if creating these habits are too little, too late to save your gums? In the world of emergency dental, this is a common reality as individuals are often unaware of and unfamiliar with taking care of gums and gum diseases that exist.

Don’t be ignorant to your oral health, learn about the two most common gum diseases and what can lead to their onset.

Gingivitis

This common gum disease is usually where it all starts. Gingivitis acts as the first step in other, more serious, oral issues. Because of this, it’s important to not only work to prevent it, but also try and reverse it if possible. What is gingivitis anyway? You may have heard of it, but do you know what it consists of?

Gingivitis is often caused by inadequate oral hygiene, and causes gums to become red, swollen and bleed easily. Key factors in whether you could develop it or not, center not only around your oral health, but other health issues as well including diabetes, smoking, genetic predisposition, systemic diseases and conditions, stress, inadequate nutrition, hormonal fluctuations, pregnancy, substance abuse and even certain medications.

Periodontitis

This gum disease is what can form if your gingivitis goes untreated. It is much more severe and can result in a loss of teeth. This happens when plaque spreads and grows below the gum line. Toxins produced by the bacteria in plaque irritate the gums and stimulate a chronic inflammatory response making the body turn on itself. Gums then separate from the teeth, forming pockets that become infected. As the disease progresses, the pockets deepen and more gum tissue and bone are destroyed.

However, this isn’t a one-size-fits-all disease. There are actually many different forms:

  • Aggressive periodontitis occurs in patients who are otherwise clinically healthy.
  • Chronic periodontitis results in inflammation within the supporting tissues of the teeth, progressive attachment and bone loss. This is the most frequently occurring form of periodontitis and is characterized by pocket formation and/or recession of the gingiva.
  • Periodontitis as a manifestation of systemic diseases such as heart disease, respiratory disease and diabetes are associated with this form of periodontitis.
  • Necrotizing periodontal disease is an infection characterized by necrosis of gingival tissues, periodontal ligament and alveolar bone.

It’s easy to see how simple discomforts or even redness can escalate into something life-altering. If you notice any signs of bleeding or irritated gums, don’t wait! Instead, contact us at Emergency Dental so we can take a look and provide you with preventative measures to ensure the worst doesn’t happen.

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