Gum Disease Risks
Gum disease is an infection that can cause tooth loss; it is associated with several serious health conditions including heart attack, stroke, and diabetes. After having an examination of your gums and bone you should ask your periodontist or dentist if you have gum disease. While genetics plays a role in gum disease you can still have gum disease even though your parents and siblings were never affected by it.
Gum Disease Symptoms
The presence of any of these symptoms warrants a complete examination for gum disease by a periodontist or dentist.
* Bleeding while brushing, flossing, or eating.
* Gum recession, which results in teeth looking longer.
* Loose teeth and shifting tooth positions where teeth no longer touch.
* Tooth loss, a consequence of gum disease.
Because gum disease can begin and progress without obvious symptoms, an examination of your gums and jaw bones is the only accurate way to determine if you have gum disease. This includes measuring the depth of the gum pockets and using x-rays to determine the bone level.
Health Conditions and Gum Disease
Gum disease is associated with many health conditions. For example heart attacks and strokes are more common when gum disease exists. Gum disease complicates blood sugar management for the diabetic and high blood sugar worsens gum disease.
As a woman, the hormonal changes during pregnancy impact your gums. Some research has suggested having gum disease can increase the risk that your infant will be born premature and or/ be low weight. You should ask your periodontist or dentist regarding oral health complications during pregnancy.
What You Can Do about Gum Disease?
* Early detection and treatment of gum disease by a periodontist can help you preserve your teeth and smile for life. A periodontist is a dentist who specializes in the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of gum disease.
* Smoking is a risk factor for gum disease, oral cancer and many other diseases. It also adversely affects healing and increases the likelihood of an infection following any type of surgery. Your periodontist or dentist and other health professionals can help you quit.
* Brushing and flossing every day is a very important behaviour to prevent decay and gum disease.
Information as per the AAP
Dr. Annabel Braganza
Peterborough Periodontist and Implant Specialist