Dentist Harrisburg, NC
Periodontics involves the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of periodontal disease. Our dentists have the expertise and experience to help you keep your teeth, gums, and jaw healthy, functional, and beautiful.
Periodontal disease ranges from a mild inflammation of the gum tissues, gingivitis, to periodontitis; a major oral disease that can result in soft tissue and bone damage. Periodontitis is the leading cause of adult tooth loss in the United States.
One of the major causes of gum disease is practicing poor oral hygiene habits. Daily brushing and flossing and regular professional exams and cleanings are essential to maintaining optimal oral health. When these practices are not followed, plaque can form on the teeth and along the gumline. If this plaque is not properly removed, it may harden over time and become calculus. Once that occurs, only a dental professional can remove the calculus from your teeth.
If gum disease is not treated in a timely manner, plaque may continue to build unchecked. When this occurs, the gum disease may advance to gingivitis. In this stage, gums redden, swell, and become prone to bleeding from normal activities, such as brushing or eating. Some other common symptoms include: chronic halitosis (bad breath), sensitive teeth, and difficulty or pain with chewing. At this point, professional periodontal treatment is needed to prevent the gingivitis from advancing to periodontitis.
Periodontitis is the most advanced form of periodontal disease. Bone loss and tooth loss are common effects of periodontitis. During this stage, gums begin to pull away from the teeth, creating small “pockets” along the gumline. These spaces are highly difficult to clean without professional intervention and can lead to rapid worsening in overall oral health. Without prompt and thorough treatment, bone, gums, and soft tissues may be destroyed by periodontitis.
Some of the most common factors that contribute to periodontal disease developing include poor oral hygiene habits, diabetes, and smoking. The American Academy of Periodontology reports that women are more at-risk for developing gingivitis during periods of hormonal change, such as puberty, menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. In addition, some medications can cause gum tissue to develop abnormal tissues, which can increase difficulty in proper cleaning of the teeth. People who are receiving treatment for AIDS are also at increased risk of developing periodontal disease.
Many recent studies have found that untreated periodontal disease may negatively impact other aspects of your overall health, especially for patients with cardiovascular disease or diabetes.
If you have symptoms of periodontal disease or would like more information, contact our office to schedule a consultation.