What Does Gum Disease Look Like?

What Is Gum Disease?

Gum disease, also called “periodontal disease,” is an infection of the gums. Bacteria begin to build up between the gums and teeth, and then infect and attack the healthy gum tissue. 

Poor oral hygiene is the biggest contributing factor, but other factors like smoking, an unhealthy diet, and dry mouth can contribute to the risk of developing gum disease.

What Does Gum Disease Look Like?

This depends on the extent and severity of gum disease. Usually, gum disease is split into three different categories, as follows:

  • Gingivitis – Gingivitis is the earliest and least severe form of gum disease, and it’s reversible with proper periodontal care. Signs of gingivitis include discolored and swollen gums, bleeding when brushing, and bad breath (halitosis).

  • Periodontitis – Periodontitis is the next stage of gum disease. It cannot be reversed, but it can be controlled to prevent further damage to your mouth. Common signs of periodontitis include gum recession that makes your teeth look longer, very swollen or puffy gums, gum tenderness, and tooth sensitivity.

  • Advanced periodontitis – Advanced periodontitis is the final stage of gum disease. In this stage, your teeth and gums have been severely damaged. Surgery may be required to save your teeth, or to remove all of your damaged teeth. Common signs of advanced periodontitis include a change in how your teeth fit together, a foul taste in your mouth, pus forming between the teeth and gums, and the loosening or total loss of one or more teeth. 

How Do I Prevent Gum Disease?

You can prevent gum disease with proper oral hygiene and periodontal care. Make sure to brush twice a day for two minutes, floss once a day, and use antibacterial mouthwash to kill oral bacteria. You should also see a dentist twice a year for checkups and teeth cleanings to keep your mouth healthy.

Depending on your situation, there may be other steps you can take to reduce your risk of gum disease, like quitting smoking, reducing your alcohol intake, addressing dry mouth, controlling diabetes, and staying hydrated by drinking plenty of water. 

Need Periodontal Care In Clermont? We’re Here To Help! 

At Clermont Family Dentistry, Clermont dentists Dr. Mundi Buechele, Dr. Christian Ortiz, and Dr. Chuong Nguyen are experts in gum disease treatment. If you believe you may have gum disease, it’s important to get help as soon as possible. The more quickly you get the periodontal care you need, the better your outcome will be. Contact us online or call us at (352) 242-1763 to schedule an appointment at Clermont Family Dentistry right away. 

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