What is gum disease?

 All gum disease is caused by plaque. Plaque is a sticky yellow film of bacteria which forms on the teeth surfaces and other hard structures including gums and roots  everyday. Many of the bacteria in plaque are harmless but some have been shown to cause gum disease. If the plaque is not removed daily it will cause bleeding of the gums, soreness, swelling or infection of the gum. It can affect the bone that supports the teeth and eventually teeth become loose and painful and tooth loss.
Gum disease may also increase your risk of other health complications, including heart disease, diabetes and strokes.
 
 There are two forms of gum disease, gingivitis and periodontitis. 


Gingivitis 

This is where the plaque accumulates on the teeth and gum line causing gums to bleed easily and often become red , tender and swollen, this is usually reversible. 

Regular maintenance cleans with the hygienist will remove the plaque. You will also be given regular advice and tips on how to clean your teeth and gums daily to help stop the build up of the plaque. 

Periodontal disease

Long-standing gingivitis can lead to Periodontal Disease. This is where the plaque builds up on the gum line and also the root surface causing bone to be lost around the teeth. As the disease gets worse the bone anchoring the teeth in the jaw gets less, making the teeth loose. If this is not treated teeth may eventually fall out. More teeth are lost due to periodontal disease than tooth decay. 

Periodontal disease is irreversible but the hygienist can help stabilize and prevent further bone and gum loss from around your teeth. The hygienist will give you a bespoke daily maintenance cleaning regime daily she can tailor to your specific needs. 

How can I tell if i have gum disease?

The main signs of gum disease include bleedings gums. This can be spontaneous or when brushing or flossing. Other signs are tenderness of the gums, swelling, redness, bad breath,gums receding, spaces developing teeth (black triangles at the gum margin between teeth), teeth moving position, tooth loss and gum infections.

What is the treatment for gum disease?

On your first appointment the hygienist will take measurements to assess the severity of the gum disease and all findings will be thoroughly discussed at your appointment by your hygienist, paper copies of the findings are available on request. If you are concerned about gums being sore or uncomfortable whilst having your clean, local anaesthetic will can be used on request; this is to provide a deep clean with minimal discomfort.  Two appointments are necessary for this treatment to be effective.