Periodontal (gum) disease describes bacterial growth and toxins that gradually destroy tissue supporting the teeth. Gingivitis and periodontitis are the two main stages of gum disease. Gingivitis involves inflammation of the gums from plaque. It can be treated and reversed with professional cleanings, daily brushing and flossing to remove plaque accumulation.
Periodontitis is an actual infection of the tissues and bone that support the teeth. Deep gum pockets are formed that allow harmful bacteria to grow and cause inflammation and infection. Untreated, periodontal diseases may eventually lead to tooth loss.
Periodontal disease often starts in adolescence and can progress painlessly for years before becoming apparent. Bone tissue wears away from around the roots of teeth faster than the gum tissue can follow. Hard to clean gum pockets harbor millions of bacteria that destroy bone. As more bone support is lost around the roots, teeth may become loose.
Early gum disease treatment may include tooth scaling and cleaning at three-month intervals along with use of medicated mouthwash and proper flossing. Call our Hackensack office to learn more about how we can help you create healthier gums.