Periodontal Disease

CaliDental

Cosmetic Dentists, Implant Dentists, & General Dentists in Lompoc, CA and San Luis Obispo, CA

Any form of periodontal disease can be painful and unpleasant, but when left untreated, it can become truly dangerous. With frequent trips to your dentist to monitor your gum health, and good oral hygiene habits, you can avoid the worst that periodontal disease has to offer. To make an appointment to assess the health of your gums, call CaliDental of San Luis Obispo and Lompoc, California, today or book online with the scheduling tool.

Periodontal Disease Q & A

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal diseases are diseases that affect your gums and oral tissues. Periodontal disease often starts as a relatively minor condition known as gingivitis. However, when left untreated, gingivitis can develop into a much more serious condition called periodontitis. 

In addition to the damage gum disease can do to your teeth and oral tissues, it has been linked to a number of dangerous conditions like heart disease and stroke. Gum disease may worsen existing heart disease and increase your risk of certain types of strokes. It can also worsen lung disease and make it more difficult for people with diabetes to control their blood sugar.

How can I tell if my gums are unhealthy?

Frequent dental checkups with the team at CaliDental are the best way to keep track of your gum health. In between visits, you can look out for the first signs of gingivitis, the earliest stage of periodontal disease. Symptoms of gingivitis include:

  • Swollen, puffy, or dark red gums
  • Bleeding while brushing or flossing
  • Bad breath
  • Receding gums
  • Tender gums

Healthy gums should be firm and light pink. If you start to notice them darkening or becoming more sensitive, schedule a dentist appointment immediately. If periodontal disease is allowed to progress to periodontitis, the symptoms can become much more unpleasant. These can include:

  • Dusky red or purplish gums
  • Gums that feel tender when touched, or bleed easily
  • Receding gums that make your teeth appear longer than normal
  • Pus and infection between your teeth and gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Painful chewing, or a change in the shape of your bite

Periodontitis can be either chronic or aggressive, and it should be treated by your dentist immediately. 

What’s the treatment for periodontal diseases?

Gingivitis, or early stage periodontal disease, can be treated much more easily than fully blown periodontitis. Gingivitis can often be treated with a professional dental cleaning and a commitment to improved oral hygiene. If your gingivitis has been caused or made worse by misaligned teeth, or poorly fitted crowns, bridgework or dental implants, you’ll likely need to fix this problem as well.

If your periodontal disease has advanced, you may require scaling and root planing procedures. These procedures clean away the tartar and bacteria that collects in the small spaces between your teeth and gums, and smooth the surface of the roots of your teeth to discourage further plaque buildup. In even more advanced cases, surgery may be necessary to aid in the cleaning process, or to graft healthy tissue into damaged areas.

For more information on periodontal disease, call CaliDental today or make an appointment with the online scheduling tool.