Periodontal (gum) Disease
Daniel Tebbi, DMD - Cosmetic Dentistry & Orthodontics in Encino, CA 91436
Gum Disease & Your Oral Health
Gingivitis – a mild form of gum disease – is the result of a chronic buildup of plaque, a sticky biofilm comprised of harmful oral bacteria and food particles that remain in the mouth after eating. When plaque is allowed to build up on the surface of your teeth and along the gum line, it slowly hardens into tartar. Tartar appears as a yellowish film on the surface of your teeth, and can only be removed during a dental cleaning at our Encino office at Daniel Tebbi, DMD - Cosmetic Dentistry & Orthodontics.
The longer plaque and tartar are allowed to remain, the more swelling and inflammation the substances will cause to the surround gum tissue. The routine act of brushing causes irritation to your swollen gums, thereby resulting in them bleeding after you brush.
Because gingivitis causes very little discomfort, most patients don’t even know they suffer from the disease until it has progressed into a more serious form of gum disease. While a little blood may seem like a simple inconvenience, gingivitis can quickly escalate into a far more serious condition known as periodontitis.
Periodontitis is a more advanced form of gum disease that poses a serious threat to your long-term oral health. Unlike gingivitis, periodontitis actually attacks your gum tissue and the surrounding bone structure that holds your teeth into position. In time, your teeth will become lose due to the lack of support, and will eventually fall out. Periodontitis ranks as the leading cause of adult tooth loss.
Periodontal (gum) disease is insidious. It is an infection of the gums that starts out as plaque, an opaque film on the teeth that hardens to form tartar. As tartar accumulates, it harbors bacteria that attack the soft tissue around the gums. This is the early stage of gum disease known as Gingivitis. Left untreated, Gingivitis becomes Periodontitis which ultimately destroys the tissue surrounding your teeth AND the bone that holds your teeth in place. Except for bad breath and gums that bleed, there are very few early warning signals. The disease advances silently, often without pain, and before you know it, you are losing your teeth and you don't know why. Tooth loss is only the most obvious indicator of gum disease.
Even more troubling, studies have linked periodontitis to a range of chronic long-term illnesses that can pose a very real risk to your overall health. Researchers have found links between advanced gum disease and such chronic illnesses as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer even an increased risk for pregnant women This research shows that by simply by allowing your oral health to deteriorate, you significantly impact not only the health of your teeth and gums, but your overall health, as well. In the past, fear of painful dental surgery has kept people with gum disease from seeking the care they needed. Well, those days are gone forever.