Gum disease refers to an infection of the gum tissue that will advance and cause major damage to your gums, teeth, and jaw without urgent treatment from a dentist. It is a common type of infection that affects about half of adults in the United States.
Though prevalent, you can still take measures to prevent this infection and protect your gum health. Practice good oral hygiene at home and visit your dentist for routine check-ups to maximize preventive periodontal care.
You can also have an easier time treating gum disease when it is diagnosed by a dentist early. Knowing the signs of gum disease can allow you to identify the issue and seek prompt treatment. Check out three symptoms that could mean you have gum disease when you read on.
Irritated or Inflamed Gum Tissue
Bacterial infection in the gum tissue can create noticeable symptoms in its early stage. Gingivitis, the initial phase of gum disease, will result in irritation and inflammation within the gums. You may notice the gums start to swell, turn red, feel tender, or even bleed.
Some irritation in the gums might occur for acute reasons, such as brushing your teeth too harshly. But if inflamed gums become chronic, you should consult with your dentist about gum disease.
Gingivitis does not always come with visible symptoms, so you should continue to visit your dentist regularly for a periodontal disease screening. Some antibacterial mouthwashes can alleviate gum irritation, but you will need treatment from your dentist to get rid of gum disease for good.
As gum disease progresses, bacteria will eat away at the gums, the teeth, and the jawbone. As a result, the gums may begin to recede, exposing more of the surface of your teeth. Not only will this affect the appearance of your smile, but it will also make your teeth more vulnerable to decay and other dangers.
Plus, gum recession may leave your teeth wobbly in your smile. Eventually, enough damage might occur within the mouth that the teeth can fall out of their sockets.
Tooth loss will leave you with structural, aesthetic, and medical concerns in your smile, so do not wait for gum disease to advance to this point. Seek urgent treatment for periodontal problems.
Chronic Bad Breath
Bad-smelling breath can be a common occurrence if you eat certain flavorful foods. But this condition should go away when you brush your teeth or rinse your mouth of lingering food particles. If bad breath persists without a known cause, you might have gum disease.
Oral bacteria will collect in the gum pockets when you contract this infection. Your toothbrush and floss cannot reach these excess bacteria, and it will emit a foul odor after a while which will affect your breath.
You will need deep cleaning with periodontal therapy to get rid of this halitosis along with gum disease. Sometimes, bad breath can occur due to other underlying health problems, so do not delay a dental evaluation for this uncomfortable symptom.