The simplest and probably the most effective of all remedial measures for tooth related problems is proper dental care and regular dental check ups! And gum disease is not an exception to it. It is believed that more than half of the American population suffers from some or the other infection at some point in life. Gum disease is actually a serious problem, which can result in severe damage to the tooth. The worst part is that, the person is not able to recognize that he is suffering from any such problem. This is because, either the problem does not show any symptoms or even if it does, the intensity of those symptoms in the beginning, is so small that the person tends to ignore them! Given below are the stages as well as the symptoms of this disease.
Gum disease is characterized by gum inflammation, that usually results in damage to the bones present around the tooth. It is generally a result of bacteria in plaque, which is a colorless, sticky layer that develops on your tooth. The best treatment is to remove the bacteria through regular brushing and therefore preventing more damage. Well, what happens if you do not do so? The obvious answer is the development of gum disease, which happens to be in stages. Its various stages are given below.
- Gingivitis: The first stage of gum disease is gingivitis, which is an inflammation in the gums. The causative bacteria if not removed, can develop toxins and can lead to severe pain in the gums, therefore cause gingivitis. Gingivitis is the just the first stage. Hence, if the infection is treated at this level itself, it may prevent damage to the tooth and bones.
- Periodontitis: Gingivitis if ignored, can advance to periodontitis! Periodontitis is characterized by irreversible damage to fiber and bones that hold the tooth in place. This further leads to the formation of a pocket or pit beneath the gum line, wherein plaque and food start accumulating.
- Developed Periodontitis: The last and probably the worst stage of gum disease is the advanced or developed periodontitis. The previous stages involved gradual damage to the tooth bone and fibers. However, in this advanced stage, these bones and fibers are completely destroyed. It further worsens the condition by loosening or uprooting the teeth.
It is not only irregular dental care that causes gum disease. In fact, there are many other reasons that lead to this problem, some of which are involuntary. The most common gum disease causes are mentioned below.
- Reactions to medications
- Hormonal changes
- Addictions towards smoking
The above discussion on the stages might have given you an idea of the symptoms. Mentioned below are some more common symptoms. These also include the pyrea gum disease symptoms.
- Swelling in gums. Redness and tenderness also occur.
- Bad breath
- Pus oozing out from the gums
- Damage to bones and fibers holding the tooth (most important of the periodontal symptoms)
- Loosening or falling of the tooth
- Bad taste
- Pain while chewing food
- Increased sensitivity in tooth
- Sores in mouth
- Bleeding while brushing or eating food.
As I have said earlier, the best treatment for gum disease is to prevent it from further development. You should meet the doctor and get proper medications in the gingivitis stage itself, so that you would not encounter further damage. Some other treatment options are medications, such as mouth rinse, to eliminate bacteria and scaling to remove plaque. In a few cases, surgery might also be prescribed.
Visit your local dentist as soon as you see the early symptoms and get them treated at a preliminary stage itself. This would keep you away from any further damage.