Did you know that there are two types of gum disease? Gingivitis and Periodontitis.
The National Institute of Health defines gum) disease as the following: “inflammation and infection that destroys the tissues that support the teeth, including the gums, the periodontal ligaments, and the tooth sockets.”
Gum disease is fairly common in American adults. Both forms of gum disease can be treated and their symptoms can be reduced with daily brushing, flossing, and by rinsing with anti-gingivitis mouthwash.
Lets breakdown these two types of gum disease down so you can know more about them and how to prevent them from happening to you.
Gingivitis causes the gums to get all red, swollen, and can often bleed easily while you are eating, brushing your teeth or flossing. It is also the mildest form of gum disease.
People often get gingivitis due to poor oral hygiene habits that causes plaque (a sticky substance to form on the teeth from sugary and starchy food) to accumulate on your teeth. And when plaque isn’t removed from your teeth it can lead to tartar (a hard deposit that forms at the base of the tooth). Both plaque and tartar cause the gums to swell and produce bacteria and toxins that cause gums to get gingivitis.
Besides poor hygiene habits there are other causes to gingivitis according to the NIH:
- Uncontrolled diabetes
- Some systemic diseases and infections such as thyroid disorders, nutritional deficiencies or HIV infection
- Certain medications that phenytoin or bismuth
- Some birth control pill medication
- Misaligned or crooked teeth
- Rough-edged fillings
- Unclean or unfit mouth appliances
This is why it is important to get regular check-ups and cleanings every six months. Also, you need to brush and floss daily to avoid any plaque and bacteria buildup. You can also use a mouthwash daily that helps prevent gingivitis.
If gingivitis isn’t taken care of it can lead to periodontitis because all the bacteria is now spreading and growing beneath the gum line. All the toxins produce bacteria that can irritate the gums causing them to get inflamed and to bleed.
Then the inflammation can become chronic and lead to further damage such as tissue and bone that support our teeth. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research explained how this happens. They state that the gum will no longer support your teeth because they pull away from the teeth and form spaces called pockets that get infected from the bacteria, plaque, and toxins. As the disease progresses, these pockets deepen and this causes more gum tissue and bone to be destroyed. If periodontitis remains untreated your teeth may become loose and fall out. If they don’t fall out they have to be removed by your dentist if they aren’t fully attached.
If you would like to learn more about gum disease or see if you have any form of gum disease. Then set up an appointment with your dentist for an evaluation.