By Thiells Dentistry
October 13, 2016
Category: Oral Health

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, affects almost half of U.S. adults in some form, according to the Centers for Disease gum diseaseControl and Prevention. Not sure if you have gum disease? Dr. Michael Bleyzer, your Stony Point and Pomona, NY family dentist, shares several periodontal disease signs and explains how you can avoid the disease.

What are the initial signs of periodontal disease?

Gingivitis, the mildest form of gum disease, causes your gums to become red and swollen. When you brush your teeth, you may notice that your gums bleed if you have gingivitis. Although some people think that bleeding gums aren't a cause for concern, identifying and treating gum disease at this stage will help you avoid the serious consequences of the disease.

What happens when gum disease progresses?

Gingivitis can eventually turn into periodontitis, a more severe form of gum disease. Tooth and bone loss can occur during this phase of the disease. If you have periodontitis, you may experience:

  • Receding gums
  • Pockets (deep spaces) around your teeth
  • Chronic bad breath
  • A foul taste in your mouth
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Loosening of teeth or a change in the fit of partial dentures

Who gets gum disease?

Gum disease is more likely to occur if you have poor oral hygiene or don't receive regular dental cleanings to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth. You are also at increased risk of developing periodontal disease if you:

  • Are female (Fluctuating hormone levels during menstruation, pregnancy and menopause increase the gum disease risk.)
  • Smoke
  • Have a disease that affects your immune system, such as leukemia or AIDS
  • Receive chemotherapy or radiation treatments
  • Take medications that cause dry mouth
  • Have a family history of gum disease
  • Suffer from poor nutrition
  • Have diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis

How can I prevent gum disease?

Brushing and flossing daily removes plaque and prevents it from turning into tartar, a hard substance that can cause the formation of pockets around teeth. Visiting your dentist every six months can help you avoid the consequences of gum disease. During those visits, your family dentist will look for signs of the disease, plus you'll receive a thorough dental cleaning that will remove plaque and tartar.

Don't let periodontal disease ruin your smile! Call Dr. Michael Bleyzer, your Pomona and Stony Point, NY family dentist, at (845) 429-8060 to schedule an appointment for an exam and cleaning.

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