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Gum Disease

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a prevalent and potentially serious oral health condition that affects the supporting structures of the teeth, including the gums and bone. It typically begins with the accumulation of plaque, a sticky film of bacteria, on the teeth and along the gumline. When plaque is not adequately removed through regular brushing and flossing, it can harden into tartar. This leads to inflammation of the gums, known as gingivitis. Early signs of gingivitis include redness, swelling, and bleeding during brushing or flossing.

If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, a more advanced stage of gum disease. In periodontitis, the inflammation extends deeper, causing the gums to pull away from the teeth and form pockets that become infected. The body’s natural response to infection, combined with toxins produced by bacteria, can lead to the deterioration of the supporting bone structure. This can result in tooth mobility, shifting, and eventual tooth loss if not addressed promptly.

Several factors contribute to the development and progression of gum disease. This includes poor oral hygiene, smoking, diabetes, genetic predisposition, hormonal changes (such as pregnancy or menopause), and certain medications. The systemic connection between gum disease and overall health is increasingly recognised, with research suggesting links to conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and respiratory issues.

Preventing gum disease involves maintaining a consistent oral hygiene routine, including regular brushing, flossing, and professional dental cleanings. Early detection is crucial for effective intervention, making routine dental check-ups essential. Treatment options for gum disease range from non-surgical approaches like scaling and root planing to more advanced procedures, including periodontal surgery or laser therapy.

Educating patient’s about the importance of proactive oral care and the potential consequences of untreated gum disease is fundamental in promoting overall well-being. Together we can prevent, detect, and manage gum disease, preserving both oral health and systemic wellness. Regular dental check-ups, personalised oral hygiene plans, and lifestyle modifications are key components of a comprehensive strategy to combat and maintain a healthy smile for a lifetime.

At Sunny Coast Dental, we make it a point to routinely screen for periodontal disease during our patients’ biannual check-ups to help detect any early signs of the condition and provide prompt treatment to prevent further damage.

You don’t need a referral to see us. Simply call us on 07 5443 1263 or book your appointment online!

6 Ways to keep your gums healthy

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