Symptoms of Gum Disease
Some symptoms of gum disease are more obvious than others. Because the disease often progresses silently, recognizing these symptoms can help you prevent or halt its spread. At Drs. Miller & Beitz Implants and Periodontics of Richmond, we believe patient education is the cornerstone of good oral health, especially when preventing or combating gum disease. Our in-office treatments usually involve patient education as well.
Symptoms of Gingivitis
Gingivitis is the first and most common stage of gum disease, making it the easiest to prevent and treat. However, many of the symptoms are painless and unnoticeable, meaning most people do not know they have the disease. Without the knowledge of these symptoms, the disease is likely to progress to more advanced stages.
Symptoms of gingivitis include gum inflammation, dark red discoloration, and gums that tend to bleed easily during flossing. At this stage, your periodontal pockets may be two to four millimeters in depth. Healthy pockets are only one to two millimeters deep.
Symptoms of Early Periodontitis
When gingivitis progresses to early periodontitis, the initial symptoms may worsen. At this stage, the infection has also spread beyond the gum tissue to the connective ligaments and underlying bone. The periodontal pockets are usually between four and five millimeters deep.
Symptoms of Moderate Periodontitis
Without treatment, the disease will progress to moderate periodontitis. At this stage, the infection will lead to moderate levels of bone deterioration. Gum recession will also occur, leaving your roots exposed to more plaque and bacteria. Exposed roots can result in severe sensitivity issues with your teeth.
As the gums and connective ligaments continue to deteriorate your teeth may become loose. The infection may also spread to your bloodstream and cause an inflammatory response throughout your body. At this point, your periodontal pockets will be between six and seven millimeters.
Symptoms of Advanced Periodontitis
During the final stage of periodontal disease, advanced periodontitis, you may experience severe pain while chewing. The infection can also cause a foul taste in the mouth and extremely bad breath. At this point, your periodontal pockets are deeper than seven millimeters, and the roots of your teeth are nearly all exposed.
Due to severe gum recession tooth loss is likely. Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States. If we diagnose you with advanced periodontitis, immediate treatment is required. In some cases, you may need surgical intervention to get your periodontal health back on track.
Three Types of Periodontitis
The three major types of periodontitis include:
|Chronic Periodontitis: This type affects mostly adults and is typically caused by plaque buildup. This is the most common type of periodontitis.
|Aggressive Periodontitis: This type usually begins during childhood and only affects a small number of people. Most of the time these people are a part of the same family due to a genetic predisposition to the disease.
|Necrotizing Periodontal Disease: This type is characterized by the death of gum tissues, connective ligaments, and the supportive bone due to a lack of blood flow. It is most common in patients with a suppressed immune system.
Schedule Your Appointment
If you think you may have gum disease, it is important to take action as soon as possible. Call (804) 285-4867 to schedule your appointment today!