What is gum disease?


Gum disease is also referred to as periodontal disease. It is an inflammation of the gums that could lead to the loss of tissue that holds your teeth in place. The main cause of gum disease is the consistent formation of plaque, bacteria, on teeth. When the plaque isn’t removed properly, it can actually cause your gums to start pulling or moving away from the teeth. Plaque that doesn’t get brushed or cleaned off your teeth can also harden and form what’s called “calculus” or tartar under your gums. This tartar will then make it even more difficult to properly remove plaque from teeth and could cause gum disease.

There are many reasons to be aware of the causes and ways to prevent gum disease. As a dentist, I can tell you that the number one reason for tooth loss in adults is gum disease. Furthermore, gum disease is also linked to coronary artery disease and other systemic diseases.

Gum disease is preventable and oftentimes reversible. The sooner you treat it, the better. Below are some symptoms and warning signs of gum disease:

  • Gums that appear red and swollen and bleed easily when brushing or flossing

  • Gums that look like they’ve pulled away from your teeth

  • Chronic bad breath

  • The appearance of pus between teeth and gums

  • Teeth that feel loose or like they are moving away from one another

We also want to share the ways to prevent gum disease include:

  • Brush your teeth twice a day with a soft-bristled toothbrush for two minutes per session

  • Clean between your teeth at least once daily with floss or another ADA approved interdental cleaner

  • Visit the Shane McDowell Dentistry for your regular checkup and cleaning

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms for gum disease noted above, please contact us today to schedule your next appointment. We care about your daily oral health routine and look forward to continuing to serve you! For more information or to schedule an appointment with us, please visit our website at www.myfortmyersdentist.com or call (239) 936-0597.

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