Fighting Gum Disease in Colorado Springs
Keeping gum disease at bay really can be a battle. Gum disease, also called periodontal disease, is a bacterial infection of your gum tissue that can also affect the connective tissue and bone structure underneath.
Everyday, millions of bacteria are hard at work in your mouth. Some are very help, such as the ones that play an integral role in digestion. Others, however, can attack teeth and gums. These harmful bacteria are mostly contained in plaque, which is that colorless and rather sticky film that accumulates in your mouth throughout the day.
When plaque isn’t removed with twice daily brushing and once daily flossing, it accumulates on your teeth along the gum line and can begin to irritate your gums. If left on your teeth for too long, plaque can harden and become tartar. This substance can only be removed during a professional cleaning.
Gingivitis and Periodontitis
Periodontal disease is divided into two stages. The first stage is called gingivitis. At the beginning of gingivitis, you may notice that your gums are swollen, somewhat tender and they may bleed when you brush or floss. If caught early enough, you can fight gingivitis with a stricter oral hygiene routine at home. In other words, don’t miss an opportunity to brush and floss in order to remove the plaque that causes gum disease in Colorado Springs.
And while untreated gingivitis does not necessarily lead to periodontitis, it is often the precursor. The signs and symptoms of periodontitis include:
- Receding gums
- Enlarged gum pockets around your teeth
- Loose and shifting teeth
As the disease progresses, more and more debris and plaque begin to collect in gum pockets. Then, the infection spreads below the gum line where bacterial toxins and your body’s own inflammatory response system start to destroy the connective tissue and bone that keep your teeth in place. Ultimately, periodontitis can necessitate tooth extraction.
To treat periodontitis, the doctors and their team at Rocky Mountain Periodontal Specialists may begin with scaling and root planing, two procedures that clear your teeth of plaque and tartar and smooth root surfaces so these troublesome substances are less likely to reattach.
Depending on how far advanced the case of periodontitis, other treatments or surgical procedures may be necessary. Pocket reductions, regenerative procedures, crown lengthening and gum grafts are just a few of the treatment possibilities.
Rocky Mountain Periodontal Specialists welcome patients from referring dentists, patients of record, and patients new to our practice. If you live in and around the Colorado Springs area and need periodontal treatment, request your appointment!