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Why a Gum Disease Diagnosis is Not Something You Can Ignore

man with gum disease flossing his teeth

If you’ve been diagnosed with periodontitis (gum disease) or gingivitis, ignoring the news can have dangerous consequences. While more common in adults over 30, gum disease can affect anyone at any age, and is the result of bacteria in the tissues below the gum line. At Winchester Dental, we provide dental and periodontal cleanings and treatments to help you manage the symptoms of gum disease.

Gum Disease is Common, But Not Harmless

Gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss, world-wide, and is not curable. Imagine your tooth roots are like the roots of a tree. Your gums are like the thick soil surrounding the tree that keep it standing strong in the earth. If that soil starts to erode, the roots become vulnerably exposed and the tree will not have the support it needs. To prevent tooth loss in the presence of gum disease, our staff at Winchester Dental provide treatments that help reduce your bacteria levels in periodontal tissues and prevent further tissue damage.

Our mouths are teeming with bacteria; it’s just a fact of being human. But when those bacteria are not brushed and flossed away effectively by regular oral hygiene practices, (or when tobacco use or excessive alcohol consumption make it easier for bacteria to thrive) they can colonize the gums and destroy healthy gum tissue.

If you’ve been diagnosed with gum disease, this means that you are already showing signs of damage in the form of deepening periodontal pockets. These pockets grow larger as bacteria continue to thrive, and increase your chances of developing cavities or losing teeth. You may not notice anything different about your mouth, initially, but at your dental exams we can measure the precise depth of your periodontal pockets to determine when you reach a critical stage.

Periodontal Treatments for Gum Disease

As we’ve mentioned, you may not notice any symptoms in the early stages of gum disease. As it progresses, you may be aware of bad breath, an “off” taste in the mouth, or blood in your saliva when you brush and floss your teeth.

Eventually you will find yourself with sore, swollen, or red gums that seem to become inflamed every time you attempt to floss.

When you visit Dr. Cathy Hong in our Brooklin, ON dental office, we’ll provide treatments to help you get your symptoms under control—so you can resume an effective home care regimen without pain or distress.

Gum disease treatments may take the form of:

  • Dental and Periodontal Cleanings: deep cleaning, also called scaling and planing, removes tartar from your teeth and tooth roots to give bacteria less of their preferred food source. We also remove bacteria below the gum line and smooth the roots of the teeth to give bacteria fewer spaces to hide in.
  • Medication and Rinses: Antibiotic medications and antiseptic rinses can help reduce infection and prevent bacteria from re-colonizing periodontal tissues after deep cleaning treatments.
  • Surgical Treatments: In cases in which gum, tooth, and bone tissues have already been damaged by gum disease, we may recommend flap surgery or gum grafting to preserve and restore healthy tissues.

The Connection Between Gum Disease and Overall Health

In recent years, medical research has confirmed that gum disease is more than just a threat to the health of your teeth and gums. The same bacteria that infest oral tissues, Streptococcus mutans, have also been found in arterial plaque and have an established connection to heart disease, stroke, heart arrhythmia, certain cancers, and rheumatoid arthritis.

For many patients, bleeding gums become a gateway that allows bacteria access to other parts of the body, where the damage they do is still not fully understood. Gum disease can also make it harder for diabetics to regulate their insulin levels and keep their blood sugar at safe levels. Every year, we seem to discover more connections between gum disease and overall health.

If you have been diagnosed with gum disease, take control of the situation now, and you may save yourself the need for more complex interventions later. Regular periodontal treatments can help ensure your symptoms stay managed, to help you better preserve the health of your teeth and gums, as well as your overall health.

Request an appointment online, or contact Winchester Dental of Brooklin, ON today at 905-425-4205. We’ll help you understand your gum disease diagnosis and maintain your gum health with regular periodontal treatments.

Your New Dentist!

Winchester Dental
Family Dental Care in Brooklin ON

16 Winchester Rd E #5
Brooklin, ON
L1M 1B3, Canada

Mon-Thu: 8:00am - 8:00pm
Fri: 9:00am - 4:00pm
Sat: 9:00am - 4:00pm
Sun: By Appointment only

Phone: (905) 425-4205