Gum disease is gum disease, or is it? Infection in the gums stems from bacterial activity. Infection in the gums needs to be treated. We can say that these are general aspects of gum disease. However, there are more nuanced aspects of this condition that need to be understood if we want to avoid unnecessary damage to oral structure. Here, we discuss the differences between gingivitis and periodontitis, two gum conditions that sit on the same path.
Gingivitis is the term used to describe mild inflammation in the soft tissue around teeth. Gingivitis could be called the initial stage of gum disease. It is crucial to understand that this mild inflammation is the only phase of disease in which infection can be stopped. The reason inflammation occurs is that plaque accumulates around teeth. The underlying cause of plaque accumulation is usually insufficient oral hygiene.
Signs that you may have gingivitis include:
Early treatment of these symptoms can prevent the progression of gingivitis to periodontitis.
The signs of gingivitis may be easy to miss. This is why routine dental exams and cleanings are so important. If inflammation progresses to infection, to periodontitis, symptoms will be much more difficult to overlook. Periodontitis can be a severe condition that invades deeper gum tissue and even bone. If this occurs, teeth can become loose and need to be extracted or secured through gum surgery.
The signs of periodontitis are not much different than those we mentioned for gingivitis. The difference is that they will be more pronounced. You may notice bleeding every time you brush and floss. A bad taste in your mouth may join your bad breath. Your teeth may feel loose or uncomfortable when you chew because they are not held as securely by the gums.
Routine dental care is the best method of avoiding gum disease and the consequences of this condition. Call our Palm Beach Gardens office at (561) 627-9000 to schedule your full exam and cleaning that can be tailored to your needs.
Gum health is a topic that is discussed in virtually every dental visit that takes place in every dental office across the globe. There are good reasons for this, and most people are aware of them. Research has confirmed the role that gum tissue plays in stabilizing teeth. Studies conducted on gum health have also confirmed the likelihood that poor oral health is relevant to general health in far more ways than we could have imagined only a few decades ago. Do you know what else has been revealed through research?
As much as 80% of adults will develop gum disease at some point.
This is a large percentage of the population to be affected by a preventable condition, and one that we know about no less! How could this happen that so many people suffer unnecessarily with a common condition? It may not be a matter of complacency so much as the inherent subtle nature of inflammation.
Gum disease begins with inflammation so mild that the indications may be missed. These include:
These are all symptoms of gum disease that have been described again and again by dental professionals. And yet they are often missed. This may be especially relevant for individuals who do not obtain regular professional care. We encourage men and women from the Palm Beach Gardens area to visit us every six months. These checkups are crucial to the earliest possible detection of inflammation, and they enable us to commence with appropriate, conservative treatment right away, when damage may be reversible.
The ultimate benefit of early periodontal treatment is the preservation of gum tissue and the supportive structures that prevent tooth loss. Immediate benefits include less costly, less aggressive protocols for disease management. For example, when we treat gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease, we may perform a general cleaning and guide optimal hygiene at home, such as switching to an electric toothbrush and adding water irrigation (Waterpik) to the daily routine.
We want you to benefit from personal dental care. To schedule your visit with us, call (561) 627-9000.
Gingivitis. It’s a term that we have all heard so much that we may be tempted to think we know all about it. Certainly, we would know if this condition developed in our mouth; and the chance that it will is very slim. Gum disease happens to “someone else,” never to us. That is until it does.
The nerves can go into a tailspin when you are told that your gums are inflamed. How could you not have noticed? How could this have happened when you brush twice a day every day? The truth is, gingivitis is sneaky, and it can happen without you knowing – and despite your best efforts. Let’s look at this early sign of gum disease a little more closely.
What is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis means inflammation of the gingiva, the soft tissue that we refer to as the gums. It is not necessarily a gum disease, but it is absolutely a warning sign that infection is not far off. The good news about a diagnosis of gingivitis is that you have the opportunity to turn things around in your mouth. With intervention during this early stage, the health of your gums can be restored.
Here is the key, and one that you don’t want to miss. Gingivitis needs to be treated. Chances are, you missed the warning signs; not because you weren’t looking, but because they are just that subtle. Unless you view your gums with magnification every day, you may not see the ever-so-slight swelling or redness. If anything, you may take notice of a little pink, which indicates bleeding, when you brush. This is the time to act.
Why Gingivitis Develops
It’s easy to think that gingivitis happens only to people who don’t practice good oral hygiene. That just isn’t true. Maybe you brush every day, but you are rushed when you do it and spend less than the recommended two minutes on the task. Maybe flossing is hit and miss, only done a few days a week. Sometimes, the plaque that causes gingivitis is just hard to get to, and it sticks, causing inflammation.
There are several factors that influence gum health. We are here to help you discover what those are, and how to navigate them. To schedule your exam and cleaning in our Palm Beach Gardens practice, call (561) 627-9000.
As you age, your teeth age right along with you.
Years of everyday wear and tear add up and definitely take a toll.
But your body is amazingly resilient and the same is true for your teeth…however, both need watchful, tender, loving care!
• What happens to your teeth as you age?
• What can you do to keep your teeth strong for a lifetime?
Gum Disease (gingivitis and periodontal disease)
The risks of gum disease increase with age. Pockets form at the gum line where bacteria grows. If left untreated, bacterial infections can cause damage to connective tissue and bone, leading to tooth loss.
• Brush and floss twice a day
• Use a WaterPik
• Use an antibacterial mouthwash
• Be diligent about your twice a year dental check-ups!
Chipping and cracking and breaking, oh my!
The function of your teeth is mechanical…to mash, chew and grind food to make it digestible.
For the most part teeth are resistant to cracking, chipping and breaking; they do not become more brittle with age. But at Lerner & Lemongello we often see patients with chips and cracks…commonly from biting down hard on something like an olive pit or a kernel of un-popped corn. Bruxism or teeth grinding caused by stress is another common cause of tooth wear and tear.
• Avoid chewing ice
• Check those olives!
• Ask Dr. Lerner or Dr. Lemongello to check your teeth for Bruxism
Tooth decay, cavities and tooth enamel
Two of the biggest threats to your teeth are sugars and starches. These carbohydrates ferment, causing bacteria in your mouth to produce acids which eat away at the enamel of your teeth.
Tiny pits form and tooth decay finds those pits, resulting in cavities. Sweetened carbonated beverages are especially harmful since carbonation increases acid levels in the mouth.
• Cap that sugar craving by chewing sugarless gum
• Take it easy on sugary foods and carbonated soft drinks
• Avoid frequent snacking
• Pay attention to your daily dental hygiene – every day!
At Lerner & Lemongello we want you to have the brightest, best-looking smile at any age!
Call us at 561.627.9000 to schedule an appointment.
Have you started to notice that your gums are slightly swollen, redder than normal or even bleed while you brush or floss your teeth? These characteristics may even be routine for you during aggressive teeth cleanings or brushing at home. The truth is that these signs are not normal and are actually indicative of the earliest stages of gum disease.
Gum disease can become an extremely painful and dangerous oral condition. However, the good news is that when it is caught early, gum disease is completely treatable and your symptoms reversible. In it’s earliest stages gum disease is commonly referred to as gingivitis. The most common cause of gingivitis is improper or insufficient oral care at home. Visiting the dentist twice a year is very important and can also help prevent the onset of gum disease. However, daily cleaning is the most effective tool at fighting the disease.
It is important not only to brush thoroughly after every meal, paying close attention to scrub along your gum line, but also to floss frequently. Flossing is perhaps the most commonly skipped step in a person’s daily oral care routine and it is by far one of the most important steps. Mouth rinses are available on the market that advertise gum disease fighting powers, however no toothpaste or mouthwash can replace the value of flossing at least once a day. Doing so will help keep your gums strong, prevent bleeding and stop gingivitis in its tracks.
If you’d like more information about how to develop an effective at home oral care routine, contactour office for more information today.