Dentist Charlotte Hall, MD
Periodontal (gum) disease is the result of inflammation caused by bacteria and plaque building up around your teeth and below the gum tissue. This inflammation can lead to bone loss and ultimately the loss of your teeth.
When bacteria start to collect in your mouth they can create a sticky substance known as “plaque.” Plaque builds up and sticks to your teeth. If it is not removed during brushing or flossing the plaque hardens and becomes tartar or calculus. Over time, plaque and tartar become more difficult to remove at home so a professional cleaning with our hygienist is important for maintaining your oral health and preventing decay and periodontal disease.
The longer the plaque and tartar remain on the teeth the more harm they can cause to your oral health. Eventually plaque and tartar will create a mild form of gum disease called gingivitis, which is inflammation of the gum tissue. Routine cleanings and proper oral hygiene can prevent gingivitis from developing.
In cases where gingivitis is not treated it can advance to periodontal disease. Inflammation affects the soft tissue (gums) and bone creating pockets between the gum tissue and the tooth. If left untreated the pockets become deep and harbor bacteria and plaque making it even harder to remove. Inflammation and bone loss can cause teeth to become loose and gums to bleed.
The treatment for limiting the progression of periodontal disease is scaling and root planning (deep cleaning), which can be performed by our dentist or hygienist. With proper home care and routine visits to our hygienist the progression of periodontal disease can be limited. It is important to regularly see us for a routine, professional cleaning and examination. It is essential to keep up with your daily oral routine at home. Flossing is crucial to preventing periodontal disease.
To learn more, contact our office today!