Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a bacterial infection of the gums. There are many indications that the gums are infected, such as tenderness or bleeding when brushing. These signs of gum disease should not be ignored. As the infection spreads, the gums become weak and lose their ability to support the teeth, which can lead to loose teeth. A dentist can treat the gum disease and prevent the infection from spreading. Dr. Garrett Oka at Sweet Tooth Dental provides treatment of gum disease in Kailua Kona, HI.
Signs of Gum Disease
Gum disease is characterized by several warning signs. If you have any of the signs of gum disease, it is important that you see a dentist who can stop the bacterial infection from spreading. Common signs that your gums are infected include:
Causes of Gum Disease
Bacteria from plaque on the teeth can cause gum disease. Brushing and flossing daily are both important for removing the plaque and bacteria that can lead to gum disease. If the teeth aren’t cleaned regularly, tartar can build up and also cause gum disease. Unfortunately, tartar can’t be removed by simply brushing or flossing. A visit to the dentist for a professional teeth cleaning is the only way to really remove tartar. In general, keeping the teeth clean so that bacteria cannot accumulate is the best way to prevent gum disease.
There are a few conditions that can leave some individuals more vulnerable to gum disease. Some people seem to be genetically predisposed to developing gum disease and might just have more sensitive gums. Individuals with diabetes or who take certain types of medications are also at greater risk of developing gum disease. Smoking increases risk, as well. Finally, women experiencing hormonal changes are often at increased risk for gum disease as their gums are more sensitive due to the change in hormone levels.
Gums that are swollen, red or tender or that bleed when brushing the teeth are likely infected. Be sure you don’t ignore these signs of gum disease. Visit a dentist to treat the infection and stop it from spreading. For treatment of gum disease in Kailua Kona, HI, call the dental practice of Dr. Garrett Oka at (808) 329-0889.