Progression of gum diseaseAt Metropolitan Dental Careour expert dentists are passionate about eliminating gum disease from our patients. However, for people who don’t visit the dentist regularly, the disease will continue to progress.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, half of adults age 30 and older have some form of gum disease, also known as periodontal disease. This disease is caused by plaque not being properly removed from the teeth. Eventually, the plaque builds up and affects your gums, teeth, and then the gum tissue and bone that support your teeth.

Common causes of periodontal disease include:

  • Poor oral hygiene habits
  • Diabetes
  • Unaddressed tooth decay
  • Certain medications that cause dry mouth
  • Hormonal changes resulting from pregnancy or oral contraceptives
  • Genetics
  • Tobacco use

If you haven’t visited your Denver dentist in over six months or are concerned about the health of your teeth, contact us today at (303) 534-6262 to set up an appointment.

Here are the phases of gum disease and how to stop the progression of the disease at each stage:

Stage 1: Gingivitis

Improper brushing techniques or habits, and a lack of regular dental cleanings, typically results in gingivitis. Gingivitis forms when bad bacteria feed on leftover starches in the mouth, eroding the enamel and breaking down gum tissues. Symptoms of gingivitis include:

  • Bright red or purple gums
  • Sensitive gums
  • Bleeding when brushing or flossing
  • Bad breath (halitosis)
  • Inflammation of the gums
  • Soft gums

If you notice any of these dental issues, contact your Denver dentist today to receive the care you need. A regular cleaning combined with good oral habits can stop the progression of periodontal disease at this phase.

Stage 2: Periodontitis

If left untreated, the symptoms of periodontal disease will become more serious and detrimental to your health. Gum disease has been linked to a number of health issues, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Oral cancer
  • Heart disease
  • High blood pressure
  • Stroke

In this critical stage, the gum tissue pulls away from your teeth, creating deep pockets where food and plaque hide. Regular brushing and flossing will no longer be able to fight off the infection. You will need to visit your dentist to get proper care—typically scaling and root planing.

Stage 3: Advanced Periodontitis

Continually ignoring these symptoms causes the destruction of the fibers and bone that support the teeth. Consequently, this puts you at greater risk for tooth loss. Once the disease reaches this stage, surgeries will most likely be needed. Our experienced dentists and board-certified periodontist will recommend one of two surgeries:

  1. Gum grafting: During this procedure, our doctors will restore your gum line by harvesting soft tissues from the roof of your mouth (or a tissue bank) and stitching them over the recessed area. This promotes gum regeneration and a healthy, aesthetically-pleasing gum line.
  2. Gum surgery: If all other treatments fail, gum surgery may be recommended. During this procedure, an incision is made along the patient’s gum line and unhealthy bacteria are removed. The tissue is stitched lightly around the base of the tooth and any damaged tissue is removed.

Contact Our Denver Office to Schedule an Appointment

At Metropolitan Dental Care, our dentists have been voted Top Doctors in the Denver area from 2008 to 2019. We give each of our patients compassionate, gentle care to prevent and treat a variety of dental issues.

Visit with our caring dentists and board-certified periodontist to get the treatment your smile needs and avoid more painful symptoms and surgeries. Schedule an appointment with us today by calling (303) 534-2626.