Periodontist Dental Surgery in Singapore
Clinic teeth whitening dentistry and Periodontal treatment in Singapore

What is Gum Disease and what type of treatments are available?

Gum disease is when the gums and bone supporting the teeth is infected by a chronic bacterial infection. Gum disease can affect multiple teeth and if left untreated can lead to the loss of tooth or teeth.

patient with teeth pain

Causes

The main cause of gum disease is bacterial plaque which is a sticky film made up of bacteria and protein from saliva which accumulates on the surface of teeth. This plaque causes gingivitis which is inflammation of the gum, causing the gums to become puffy and red and bleed easily. Gingivitis is considered a mild form of gum disease which can be reversed

However, if left untreated, Gingivitis can progress to a more advanced stage of gum disease called periodontitis in which the gums start to separate from the teeth which allows bacteria to form gum pockets which will destroy the bone and connective tissues supporting the tooth.

gum disease can lead to greater problems

This will cause the tooth to eventually come loose and need removal. Gingivitis and Periodontitis can occur at any age

The Risk Factors

There are many factors that can increase your chance of being at risk of gum disease such as:

  • Poorly controlled diabetes which means that you are at a higher risk of developing infections, including periodontal disease.
  • Smoking is the most significant risk factor associated with the development of periodontitis.
  • Undergoing hormonal changes such as puberty or pregnancy in females.
  • Taking certain medications that may cause your gums to swell or overgrow
  • A lower immunity against infection due to HIV infection or if you are undergoing cancer treatments
  • Poor nutrition caused by your diet
  • Genetic susceptibility to periodontal disease

Symptoms of Gum Disease

Some symptoms associated with gum disease include:

  • Swollen or puffy gums
  • Bright red or purplish gums
  • Gums that feel tender when touched
  • Easily bleeding gums
  • Pink-tinged toothbrush after brushing
  • Blood when flossing or brushing your teeth
  • Bad breath
  • Pus between your teeth and gums
  • Loose teeth or loss of teeth
  • Painful chewing
  • Gaps developing between your teeth
  • Gums that pull away from your teeth (recede), making your teeth look longer than normal
  • A change in the way your teeth fit together when you bite

Gum Disease Treatment

So, how can gum disease be treated? As they say, prevention is better than cure and that rings true with periodontitis. Gum disease can be prevented by following a program of good oral hygiene daily and consistently. That means brushing your teeth for two minutes at least twice daily, once in the morning and before going to bed and flossing at least once a day.

make an appointment with your dentist

Flossing before you brush allows you to clean away the loosened food particles and bacteria. Good oral hygiene prevents the development of an environment around your teeth that is favorable to specific bacteria that cause periodontal disease.

Regular dental visits can also help prevent gum disease by going regularly for cleanings, usually every six to 12 months. If you have any risk factors like smoking, changing your habits can also help prevent gum disease.

As for curing gum disease, gum surgery can be performed to clean any bacteria in the gums to prevent it from progressing further. However, you should contact your dentist before seeking surgery