A Close Look at Periodontal Disease

Periodontal disease is actually quite common in the United States. I would like to go over in more detail what periodontal disease is and how you can get it, so that you can more easily prevent it from occurring.

Okay, so periodontal disease is more commonly known as gum disease. Many adults can have varying degrees of periodontal disease without even knowing. For this reason, it is important to get your teeth checked on by a dental professional. Only a dentist will be able to see the beginning stages of periodontal disease.

The first thing I want to talk about is what the cause of periodontal disease is. Your mouth is teaming with bacteria. If you do not brush and floss properly, the bacteria and plaque build up on the teeth. Plaque is a sticky colorless substance that contains bacteria. Brushing and flossing does remove plaque but if you do not brush or floss properly or regularly, this plaque can harden and become tartar. Tartar is not easily removed, and does not remove with brushing and flossing.

The longer that plaque and tartar are on the teeth, the more damage it does to them. It causes inflammation of the gums, also known as gingivitis. This is a mild form of gum disease which does not result in any loss of bone or tissue that hold the teeth in place. However, it does cause gums to become red, swollen and more sensitive.

Gingivitis can develop into periodontal disease, which is an inflammation of the gums around the teeth. The gums pull away from the teeth and form pockets where the plaque and tartar spread below the gum line. Bacterial toxins and the body’s natural response to infection start to break down the bone and connective tissue that hold teeth in place. The teeth can become loose and may need to be removed. Gingivitis can be easily reversed by proper brushing and flossing, but once it develops into periodontal disease, you must go to a dentist to get a deep cleaning procedure to remove the built up plaque and tartar that has formed below the gum line.


It is advised that you brush twice a day and floss once a day to help prevent gum disease. You may also consider changing diet and other habits that may contribute to plaque build up, such as smoking. And always go to your dentist once every six months to get a check up and ensure all is well.