Periodontitis is an advanced form of gum disease which affects the gum tissue and underlying bone. As the disease progresses, the bone which anchors your teeth into your jaw is lost. This makes the teeth loose, and if left untreated, the teeth can fall out. There is also increasing evidence of this condition’s link to a range of medical conditions including heart disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes.
Symptoms can include swollen, sore or red gums, bleeding gums, bad breath, loose or separating teeth, gums which are receding away from the teeth and a change in the way your teeth bite together. However, these symptoms vary from person to person, and not everyone notices them, especially at the first stages of disease progression. This is one of the main reasons why it is so important for you to visit us for regular check-up examinations.
If you do suffer from periodontitis, we are able to treat you directly at Riverhead Dental Practice without the need to refer you elsewhere.
Other offered treatments:
- Recontouring of the gum tissues and the bone (crown lengthening) so that restorations can be fitted on fractured or broken teeth
- Recontouring of the gum tissues in the esthetic zone to correct a “gummy smile” in order to create a more harmonious smile
- Use of soft tissue grafts (gum grafts) to cover denuded roots from receding gums
- Expose unerupted teeth to facilitate their retraction into the mouth with orthodontic appliances (braces)
Some factors can increase the risk of gum disease:
- Poor oral hygiene that allows the build up of plaque and tartar with certain bacteria
- Smoking compromises healthy blood supply to the gums and can affect the fight against infection and healing
- Diabetes mellitus that is not under optimal control can affect the vascularity of the tissues and the fight against the infection
- Some medications can cause gingival (gum) overgrowth
- Genetic predisposition that might be identified from the dental history of the family
- Pregnancy and puberty increase the levels of certain hormones which can affect the gum health
- Compromised immune system – this may occur if you have an illness which makes you more susceptible to infection, or if you are receiving chemotherapy treatment
If you are concerned please book an appointment with us, we can help.
What can I do to improve my oral hygiene?
The most important aspect of taking care of your oral health is to ensure you clean your teeth every day following this routine:
- Brush teeth at least twice a day, preferably with an electric toothbrush
- Use dental floss or inter-dental brushes to clean in between your teeth
- Use a mouthwash regularly, especially if advised by your dentist
- Brush your tongue as part of your daily routine
- Regular check ups & hygiene appointments
Is there anything else I can do?
If you are a smoker, seek advice about smoking cessation
Eat a healthy and balanced diet, limiting the amount of food and drink with high levels of sugar or acidic content
Chewing sugar free gum between meals can help to maintain a flow of saliva in the mouth which can help to clean the mouth