Gum disease can often be reversed, especially when it is still in the early stages. However, the longer the patient goes without treatment, the harder it becomes to treat and reverse gum disease, and the symptoms can cause complex issues such as the loss of teeth.
Due to the seriousness of severe gum disease, it is important to treat it as soon as symptoms present themselves. This also helps ensure you do not spend more than necessary or subject yourself to the more invasive dental procedures that are often necessary to treat severe gum disease.
Gum disease is a condition in which the gums become infected and irritated. There are two forms of gum disease. The first and more mild form is known as gingivitis. This form can often be reversed if treatment is administered in a timely manner. However, gum disease can worsen into periodontitis, a more severe form of gum disease that is harder to treat and reverse.
The symptoms of gum disease vary depending on the severity of the condition. In the early stages, the most common symptoms include swollen (inflamed) gums, discoloration, gum irritation, tenderness, and bleeding gums. As gum disease progresses, symptoms such as deep gum pockets, gum recession, and loose or fallen out teeth may develop.
Ultimately, teeth that do not have adequate support from gums and the jawbone become lost. In the meantime, untreated gum disease continually worsens and can cause a range of issues along the way. Gums may begin to recede, the pockets in between teeth may become deeper, and the jawbone may lose some of its density. If the roots of the teeth become exposed, then teeth can become sensitive and cause discomfort.
The good news is gum disease can be treated and often reversed. Treating gingivitis may only require improvements in the patient’s oral care routine and a routine in-office cleaning procedure Periodontitis is trickier, but it can also be treated and managed long-term. However, patients may require more extensive treatment to address the severe symptoms of gum disease (e.g., pocket reduction surgery) and deep dental cleaning to remove plaque and tartar build-up beneath the gum line. After treatment, the goal is to prevent gum disease through regular visits to the dentist and good oral hygiene practices at home.
You can schedule a visit with our dental practice to discuss gum disease treatment and to put together a long-term gum disease prevention plan. Gum disease is likely to lead to severe oral health complications if it remains untreated for an extended amount of time, so we encourage you to reach out today if it has been more than six months since you have had the health of your gums checked.
Request an appointment here: https://familydentistphoenix.com or call Phoenix Family Dentistry at (602) 547-9007 for an appointment in our Phoenix office.