Understanding Periodontal Disease

Healthy gums are pink and firm. If your gums become red, puffy/swollen, or blood starts appearing in the sink when you’re brushing your teeth, chances are that you have gingivitis. These are all signs that proper oral care is needed.

It’s never natural to see bleeding gums when brushing or flossing. You may think that you’re just brushing too hard, but frequent gum bleeding is a likely sign that you have gingivitis. As plaque and tartar stay on your teeth, the gingiva becomes more irritated, causing your gums to become swollen, red, inflamed. These conditions cause gums to bleed easily, especially while brushing or flossing. According to the ADA, bleeding gums caused by gingivitis are completely reversible.

If the conditions in the mouth aren’t addressed, the symptoms of gingivitis may get worse and progress to periodontitis. Pain when chewing, sensitivity to hot and cold, receding gums, and loose teeth are all signs of more advanced gum disease like moderate or advanced periodontitis.

Periodontal or gum disease is an infection of the supporting tissues and bone that hold your teeth in place. It's an advanced stage of infection in your gums. If discovered while still in the stage known as gingivitis, it can be reversed with professional care. But periodontal disease requires professional intervention. The condition mainly affects adults in their 30s and 40s, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NICDR).

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