Periodontal literally means “around the tooth”. The Peridontium is made up of Gum (gingiva), Root surface (cementum), Connective tissue attachment (supporting ligaments) and Bone. The supporting or periodontal ligament is comprised primarily of collagen fibers, which attach the tooth to the supporting bone and gingival tissue.

Periodontal Diseases (Gum Diseases) include Gingivitis and Periodontitis, which are serious infection that can lead to tooth loss. Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gum and bone supporting the teeth.

The main cause of periodontal disease is Bacterial Plaque, a sticky, colorless film that constantly forms on the teeth. Plaque begins to form on the teeth 4-12 hours after brushing, which is why it is important to brush at least twice daily especially before beds and floss at least once daily. Plaque that is not removed by regular brushing and flossing can harden into a tarter (Calculus). A Dentist or a Dental Hygienist can only remove these deposits.

Healthy gums are light pink in color or pigmented.  There should be no bleeding when brushing or flossing
   
A periodontal probe is used to measure the depth of gingival pockets.  This measurement helps determine the amount of tooth attachment

 

Periodontal Disease May Progress

Even if you have no noticeable symptoms, periodontal disease could be damaging the supportive tissues that form the foundation for your teeth. Gingivitis, a mild form of the disease, may progress to periodontitis, which in turn may lead to advanced periodontitis. The earlier you treat periodontal disease, the easier it is to control, and the better chance you have of restoring the health of your mouth and saving your teeth.

Gingivitis :

If not removed regularly from teeth and gums, bacteria grow out of control and produce toxins that irritate your gums. Calculus along the gum line forms a rough surface on which plaque accumulates, causing more irritation and swelling.

You may notice sore, bleeding gums or bad breath. Spaces between gum and tooth (pockets) may exist, but no bone is damaged in this mild, reversible form of periodontal disease.

 

Periodontitis :

In the most common form of periodontitis, plaque (and sometimes calculus) is found below the gum line. The gums may feel irritated and be bright red, bleed easily, and shrink back (recede).

The ligaments break down and the gum detaches and pulls away from the teeth. The pockets deepen and fill with more bacteria. Supportive ligaments and bone start to show damage, resulting in loose teeth.



Advance Periodontitis :

When periodontitis progresses to the advanced stage, pockets deepen and may fill with pus. There may be swelling around the root, and you may experience sensitivity to hot or cold or feel pain when brushing your teeth.

As bone loss increases, your teeth may lose so much support they fall out or need to be removed to preserve the overall health of your mouth.

 

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