FAQ: All About Gum Disease

Laancster & Palmdale dentistAt Premier Dental Care in Antelope Valley, our dentists provide a wide range of dental services to ensure that we can meet the unique needs of our patients. There is rarely a dental concern that we cannot treat in our Palmdale & Lancaster, CA offices. One of the most common dental concerns that we treat is gum disease; however, many patients do not know what gum disease is, why it occurs, and how it is treated. Dr. Naguib, your dentist in Antelope Valley, answers frequently asked questions about gum disease below:

What is gingivitis?

Gingivitis is considered the first stage of gum disease development. If you have noticed a small amount of blood in the sink following brushing or flossing your teeth, you have likely experienced gingivitis. Gingivitis occurs when the plaque or tartar buildup on your teeth begins to irritate your gumline, causing it to bleed when irritated. By improving your at-home oral hygiene and ensuring that you are brushing and flossing at least twice a day, you can reverse the effects of gingivitis and prevent your gum disease from progressing further.

What is gum disease?

Gum disease occurs when gingivitis worsens, causing more invasive symptoms. Signs and symptoms of gum disease include red gums, tender gums, gum line recession, loose teeth, and bad breath. This occurs when the bacteria inside of the plaque and tartar surrounding your gum line begins to eat away at your soft tissues, causing inflammation and infection. Hormonal changes, certain medications, and illnesses may also contribute to gum disease development. It’s important to see your dentist as soon as possible if you suspect you are dealing with gum disease, as this concern may lead to tooth loss if left untreated.

How can I prevent gum disease?

Plaque and tartar buildup is the source of gum disease development. To prevent gum disease progression, patients should practice a strict at-home oral hygiene routine. Brush and floss at least twice a day to avoid keeping bacteria on your dental structures overnight. Throughout the day, rinse your mouth out with water when brushing and flossing are not convenient. Additionally, patients may consider chewing sugar-free gum to reduce the amount of food residue left behind on their smiles after midday meals. Most importantly, patients should attend their routine dental appointments once every six months to have any plaque or tartar buildup removed from their dental structures before it has the chance to cause problems.

How is gum disease treated?

Your treatment options for gum disease will depend on the severity of your case. At Premier Dental Care, we offer periodontal therapy solutions including scaling and root planing, gum graft surgery, and flap surgery. The goal of these procedures is to remove all infected tissue and to clean above and below the gum line to completely get rid of the infection. Laser dentistry solutions may be used to remove infected tissue. The best way to find out which treatment option for you is to schedule an appointment with our team of dental professionals. We can help you restore your smile and your peace of mind in our Antelope Valley dentist offices.