Gingivitis, an early form of gum disease, is caused by an excessive buildup of plaque—the sticky, soft, colorless film of bacteria that develops naturally on the gums and teeth. If left untreated, gingivitis can develop into a more serious form of gum disease, known as periodontitis, which can cause permanent damage to your jaw and teeth. Though gingivitis is often painless, the dentists at Finger Lakes Periodontics in Geneva, NY, recommends seeking treatment from a dental care professional if you exhibit any signs or symptoms.
How Do I Know if I Have Gum Disease?
Early signs and symptoms of gum disease include receded gums; gums that bleed easily when flossing or brushing; gums that are swollen, red, or tender; persistent bad breath; loose teeth; and teeth that are overly sensitive to hot or cold temperatures. Gum disease can also cause the formation of pockets between the gums and teeth, where food particles and plaque collect. If these signs and symptoms sound familiar, be sure to contact your dentist immediately to determine a proper treatment plan.
How Can I Prevent Gum Disease?
The good news is that gingivitis can be reversed in nearly all instances where proper plaque control is practiced. This involves a minimum of two professional teeth cleanings a year and daily brushing and flossing. Flossing extracts food debris and plaque from beneath the gum line and in between the teeth; brushing twice a day removes plaque from the surfaces of teeth. Your dentist may also recommend rinsing with an antibacterial mouthwash to reduce harmful bacteria that cause plaque and gingivitis.
When it comes to gum disease, a healthier mouth starts with proper dental care. At Finger Lakes Periodontics, dentists Sean W. Meitner and Gabriella Ciornei provide personalized, high-quality preventative, cosmetic, and restorative treatments designed to ensure patient health, comfort, and satisfaction. Stop by their website or call (314) 789-2380 to schedule an appointment.