Do Not Ignore the Signs

What is Periodontal (Gum) Disease?

The precursor to periodontal disease is gingivitis.  When the bacteria causing gingivitis move into and infect the surrounding bone, then the condition is referred to as periodontal disease.  This infection destroys the bone supporting your teeth.  Gingivitis is reversible, however periodontal disease is not, and if not stopped can lead to the loss of otherwise healthy teeth.  Think of it as a tree on a riverbank that has had all of the soil washed away from its roots and falls . . . the tree itself was healthy, but its support was taken away and the tree is lost nonetheless.

What are the signs of periodontal (gum) disease?

If you notice any of the following signs of periodontal (gum) disease, see your dentist immediately:

  • gums that bleed when you brush your teeth
  • red, swollen or tender gums
  • gums that have pulled away from the teeth
  • bad breath that doesn't go away
  • pus between your teeth and gums
  • loose teeth
  • a change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite
  • change in the fit of partial dentures