What Causes Gum Disease?
Gum disease is mainly triggered by the accumulation of plaque, a sticky bacterial film on your teeth and gums. However, several other factors can contribute:
Smoking or chewing tobacco: These habits can significantly worsen gum health.
Poor oral hygiene: Inconsistent or inadequate dental care can set the stage for gum issues.
Hormonal changes: Life stages like pregnancy, menopause, and puberty can make gums more vulnerable.
Medical conditions: Conditions like diabetes can heighten your risk of developing gum disease.
Certain medications: Some meds can cause dry mouth, reducing the saliva that naturally cleans your mouth.
Genetic predisposition: Some people are naturally more prone to gum disease due to their genetic makeup.
Common Gum Disease Symptoms
Gum disease can be a silent troublemaker, sneaking up on you with symptoms that might initially seem minor.
However, paying attention to the early warning signs is crucial to prevent the condition from worsening. Here's what to keep an eye out for:
Red, Swollen, or Tender Gums
This is often the first sign that something's not quite right with your gum health.
Bleeding When Brushing or Flossing
If you see pink in the sink, it's time to pay a little more attention to your gums.
Gums Pulling Away from Your Teeth
Recessing gums can create pockets where bacteria love to hide.
Loose or Separating Teeth
If your teeth are pulling away from your gums or other teeth, this is a more advanced symptom of gum disease and a big red flag.
Persistent Bad Breath
If bad breath — also called halitosis — sticks around, your gums might be the reason.
Changes in Bite
If your bite — or even the fit of your dentures — feels off, this can indicate changes in your gum and bone structure.
If you notice any of these symptoms, scheduling a visit with Dr. Aquino at White Oak Dental & Orthodontics in Avenel is a good idea. Early intervention can make all the difference.
How We Treat Gum Disease
At White Oak Dental & Orthodontics in Avenel, we're committed to helping you fight gum disease head-on.
Dr. Aquino offers two effective treatments to get your gums back in tip-top shape:
- Scaling and root planing
- Antibiotic therapy
These treatments are designed to deep-clean your gums and eliminate bacteria, leading you to a healthier smile.
Scaling & Root Planing
Dr. Aquino employs a two-step deep cleaning method called scaling and root planing to tackle early-stage gum disease:
- Scaling: This first step involves meticulously clearing away plaque and tartar that have built up around your gums.
- Root planing: Next, we move on to root planing, which involves Dr. Aquino carefully contouring and smoothing out your tooth roots.
This dual action promotes quicker gum healing and creates a surface that's less inviting for future plaque buildup. It's a proactive approach to keep your gums healthy and halt the progression of gum disease.
During this targeted approach to combat gum disease, Dr. Aquino administers the antibiotic directly onto your affected gums to ensure precise treatment where it's most needed.
The medication dries swiftly before gradually dispensing its healing properties over an extended period. This ongoing treatment not only eradicates hard-to-reach bacteria but also minimizes the depth of gum pockets, common hiding spots for bacteria.
Antibiotic therapy effectively supplements scaling and root planing, ensuring a comprehensive fight against gum disease.