Periodontal disease- also known as gum disease- is an infection of the gums and the bone that support and surround your teeth. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention identify the following as signs of periodontal disease:
- Bad breath or chronic bad taste in your mouth
- Sore, swollen or red gums
- Bleeding gums
- Painful chewing
- Teeth that feel loose or sensitive
- Shifting teeth
- Gum recession
- Changes in bite
Routine dental checkups are particularly important if you have any of these periodontal disease risk factors:
- You take medications that cause dry mouth
- Poor oral hygiene
- A family history of periodontal disease
There are three stages of periodontal disease and obviously, the sooner it is identified and treated, the better.
Stage 1- Gingivitis
This stage only affects the gums by causing inflammation.
Stage 2- Periodontitis
Untreated gingivitis leads to periodontitis, which is inflammation around the teeth. It also can cause gum recession and teeth to loosen.
Stage 3- Advanced periodontitis
This most serious stage of periodontal disease destroys the bone that supports the teeth and causes teeth to fall out. This stage often requires surgical intervention.
If you have advanced periodontal issues, dental implants can be the best way to restore your smile and preserve bone structure. We will refer you to an oral surgeon or periodontist to have your implant placed. Once it integrates into your jawbone, we can fully restore it by placing a porcelain crown over it. Replacing missing teeth is important because it prevents the neighboring teeth from drifting, which can change your bite pattern and cause your teeth to wear abnormally.