Gregory Family Dental
Cosmetic & Family Dentist located in Kansas City, MO
Gum disease doesn’t always have symptoms, but if it’s not caught and treated in time, it can lead to periodontitis and tooth loss. During your bi-annual check-up at Gregory Family Dental, Emile McLaurian, DDS, checks your gums to keep them healthy and treats them if necessary. If you notice blood on your toothbrush or dental floss, or if your gums are inflamed or sore, you may need treatment for gum disease. Schedule a gum evaluation by calling the office in Kansas City, Missouri, or booking an appointment online.
Gum Disease Q & A
What is gum disease?
Gum disease — also known as periodontal disease — is an inflammation or infection of the tissues that hold your teeth in place. Gum disease occurs in two phases:
Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums. You may notice symptoms such as blood on your toothbrush or swollen, reddened gums. If you brush your teeth twice daily and floss at least once a day and your gingivitis doesn’t resolve within a few days, call Dr. McLaurian. Gingivitis can easily be reversed with treatment so that it doesn’t progress to periodontitis.
Periodontitis is a gum infection that can degrade your gums and even spread to your jawbones or other parts of your body. If periodontitis isn’t treated in time, your gums and bones might not be able to support your teeth, and they may fall out or require extraction.
What are the symptoms of gum disease?
Gum disease doesn’t always have symptoms. That’s why getting your teeth and gums checked twice a year at Gregory Family Dental is so important for every member of your family. Contact Dr. McLaurian immediately if you notice symptoms such as:
- Blood on your toothbrush or floss
- Inflamed or sore gums
- Dark or reddened gums
- Bleeding gums
- Receding gums
- Gums pulling away from your teeth
- Sensitive teeth
- Bad breath
The sooner you treat gum disease, the more easily you can restore the health of your gums.
What causes gum disease?
Gum disease usually starts with poor oral hygiene. You should brush away the sticky, bacteria-rich film known as plaque that coats your teeth every time you eat. Otherwise, plaque hardens into tartar that irritates your gums, causing gingivitis and periodontitis.
After plaque hardens into tartar, you can’t brush or floss it away anymore. Dr. McLaurian removes this tartar from your teeth when he cleans them during your routine dental cleaning appointment.
Children can also develop gum disease. Dr. McLaurian instructs his pediatric patients on proper brushing and flossing habits during bi-annual examinations.
How is gum disease treated?
If Dr. McLaurian diagnoses gum disease in you or your child, he cleans your teeth and gums to remove plaque. He may also prescribe:
- Deep cleaning scaling and planing
- At-home periodontal trays to kill gum bacteria
- Periodontal surgery
- Dental implants to replace lost teeth
If you suspect gum disease, schedule an appointment at Gregory Family Dental today. Call the friendly staff or book a consultation online.