Does it hurt when you chew? Do regular brushing and flossing cause your gums to bleed? If so, there’s a high probability that you’re suffering from gum disease, a nasty infection that can wreak havoc on your smile.
If you think you might be suffering from gum disease, please see your dentist right away.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a bacterial infection of the gums. The bacteria which causes gum disease feeds on the plaque and tartar in your mouth.
The best way to prevent gum disease is to fight plaque and tartar by brushing, flossing, and rinsing your teeth with an antibacterial mouthwash every day and by visiting your dentist for checkups at least twice a year.
How Common is Gum Disease?
According to the American Dental Association, almost half of Americans over the age of 30 are suffering with gum disease. And the situation gets worse as we grow older–almost two thirds of Americans over the age of 65 are afflicted with gum disease.
The scary thing is that many people don’t even realize that they have gum disease. And some people actually believe that it’s natural for their gums to bleed when the brush. Of course, the only way to know for sure if you have gum disease is to see your dentist.
The Three Stages of Gum Disease
There are three stage of gum disease:
- Advanced periodontitis
If you catch gum disease early, during the gingivitis stage, there’s a good chance that your dentist will be able to treat the condition before it inflicts serious damage on your smile.
But if you don’t actively work to counteract your gum disease, it will probably get worse. Eventually, it could cost you to lose one or more of your teeth.
The Symptoms of Advanced Periodontitis
When gum disease is allowed to progress all the way to the advanced periodontitis stage, the symptoms become truly shocking:
- Foul-smelling breath
- Pus oozes from infected pockets around the base of teeth
- Swollen, sensitive, red, and bleeding gums
- Chewing is painful
- Teeth move around your jawbone
- Teeth look like they’re growing larger as gums recede
- There’s a perpetual bad taste in your mouth
- Teeth fall out
Long-Term Health Risks of Gum Disease
Unfortunately, gum disease can destroy a lot more than just your smile. Researcher have linked gum disease to the following serious medical conditions.
- Premature childbirth
- Respiratory ailments
Visit Your Dentist in Jackson, MS
When it comes to gum disease, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So take good care of your teeth at home and visit Tharp & Klaus for regular checkups. Why not schedule your next appointment today?