September 30, 2016
You’ve lived in Colorado for years and have never been to the top of Pike’s Peak. That has all changed today, and you’re gasping for air not only because of the beautiful view, but the altitude as well. It’s a nice sunny day down at the base, but now you find yourself ankle deep in snow. You huff and puff your way to a good spot so you can take a picture of yourself. You look up at your phone and the first thing you notice isn’t the beauty of nature, but rather your teeth. They are looking quite a bit longer than usual. Have your gums receded? This could be a sign of gum disease. The periodontist in Cascade wants you to know what you can do about it.
Signs of Gum Disease
Words are very powerful parts of a culture and can influence us in many ways. Whenever you practice oral hygiene at home it’s called, “brushing your teeth.” This is interesting because during this time, you should be cleaning your gums as well. The phrasing leads many people to forget to brush and floss along the gum line. The gums serve an important purpose in the mouth. The enamel around the roots of your teeth is thinner and more vulnerable than the enamel of the crown. The gums provide an extra level of protection, as well as bring healthy and consistent blood flow. If the gums are not being taken care of, they can start to experience gum disease. Beyond receding gums, some signs of gum disease are:
- Red, swollen, or puffy gums
- Sensitive gums
- Gums that bleed easily when cleaned
- Pockets or bumps along the gums
These signs point to the fact that plaque and bacteria has built up along the gum line and is starting to break it down. If it isn’t averted in a timely manner, it could easily lead to tooth loss. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in patients over 35.
How Can I Cure It?
The more mild form of gum disease is called gingivitis. This can be easily treated through more adequate brush and flossing, paying special attention to the gums. You simply need to make sure that you brush specifically where the gums meet the teeth. This can help break down the plaque and bacteria that has built up. A more severe case of gum disease is called periodontitis. In this case, a few different treatment options are available. The first is a pair of procedures called scaling and root planing. Scaling involves using specialized tools to clean your teeth along and under the gum line. Once they have been cleaned, root planing helps shape the roots of your teeth so there is a lesser likelihood of buildup in the future. We may suggest soft tissue grafting if your gums have become quite receded. This involves taking a small bit of tissue from the roof of your mouth and using it to rebuild the gums around your teeth.
We Can Help You
Gum disease can be very painful for a patient, so if you are experiencing any of the signs, please make an appointment with us today. Your gums are just as important as your teeth when it comes to your oral health, and we know we can help you take care of them.
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