Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease and affects more than half of American adults at some point during their lifetime. Though the condition is common, it can cause a great deal of damage to your teeth.
Gum disease can be treated, especially with early diagnosis and treatment planning. Dr. Bradley Dean, a periodontist in Plano, TX, describes steps you can take to fight the first stage of gum disease, gingivitis.
How Do I Know If I Have Gingivitis?
Bacteria in your mouth develop a film of plaque over your teeth throughout your day, which you remove with oral hygiene practices. Over time, plaque that remains on your teeth can irritate your gums, causing inflammation.
You may notice swollen, tender, or bleeding gums during this early stage of gum disease that dental professionals call gingivitis. Sometimes, these symptoms are not prevalent, but your dentist can evaluate your gum health during a routine exam. You should schedule these appointments every six months to ensure optimal oral health.
Will It Go Away on Its Own?
You can prevent gum disease with proper oral hygiene practices. Your dentist may also recommend rinsing your mouth with an antibacterial mouthwash to balance bacteria and reduce your risk of infection.
However, if your dentist diagnoses you with gum disease, the best method to get rid of this condition is to follow advice from your dentist. The infection can be stubborn and may require professional intervention to treat effectively.
Ignoring gingivitis can lead your gum disease to progress. Advanced gum disease can spread through your gums to your jaw and ultimately cause tooth loss and other dental concerns.
What Treatment Can I Expect?
During routine dental appointments, your dentist cleans plaque and tartar build-up from your teeth, especially in hard-to-reach areas like near your gumline. Clearing bacteria from the affected area is a crucial treatment for gingivitis, so maintaining your regular dental visits is important.
If the infection remains, your dental professional may recommend a more thorough cleaning process called scaling and root planing, which pays special attention to removing plaque from gum pockets. Your dentist may need to pursue more invasive procedures if the infection persists or spreads.
Treat Gum Disease in Plano, TX
Dr. Dean treats gum disease and other periodontal concerns in patients in Plano, TX. Our practice also specializes in dental implants, sedation, and other dentistry. To schedule a consultation or appointment with us, contact our office online or reach us by phone at 972.666.1594.