Studies have found that 75%–80% of U.S. adults have some form of periodontitis, or gum disease. It’s so prevalent because most people don’t even know they have it during the early stages of the disease. Gum disease begins with plaque, the build up of harmful bacteria on your teeth. Most people don’t realize they have plaque build up until their dentist mentions it during a routine exam. Left untreated, however, plaque hardens into tartar, which irritates and inflames the gum tissue. Tartar can only be removed professionally by a dentist. If tartar progresses, that’s when you’re faced with gingivitis or more serious development of gum disease that can eventually lead to tooth loss.
Gum disease prevention begins at home with proper brushing and flossing. It’s a simple step we can take for granted, but one that is critical in preventing this disease.
Red and swollen gums, or gums that bleed when brushing and flossing could be the first signs of gum disease, or gingivitis. If gingivitis is left untreated, it can cause the gums to become further inflamed and irritated, accompanied by more bleeding and soreness. As the disease progresses, the jawbone can become infected and the gums will begin to recede. Tooth loss can also occur.
Along with poor dental hygiene, the following individuals are at a higher risk of contracting gum disease:
At Dental Care of Boca Raton, we help treat patients in Boca Raton, FL and the surrounding area who have gum disease so they can regain a healthy and beautiful smile. Please call our office at 561-332-4581 if you experience any signs of this silent disease.