It is estimated by the CDC that nearly half of all adults over age 30 have gum disease to some degree. The chances of developing advanced gum disease increase with age and the effectiveness of your oral hygiene routine.
The primary cause of gum disease is tartar buildup at the gum line. Tartar is formed when plaque and food particles are not removed by brushing and flossing twice per day. Once tartar forms it is very hard for you to remove at home, and can only be effectively cleaned at your regular dental checkup.
The earliest stage of gum disease is known as gingivitis. Symptoms include red or inflamed gums that bleed easily after brushing and flossing. Many people also complain of issues with chronic bad breath.
If gingivitis isn’t resolved in a timely manner it will gradually advance into the more dangerous form of gum disease known as periodontitis. This can cause the gums to recede from the base of your teeth creating pockets of infection in your gum tissue. In time this can compromise the roots of teeth and result in a loss of bone material.
The systemic inflammation caused by gum disease and also have an impact on other medical conditions. While gum disease does not cause these problems it does seem to have a relationship with conditions like diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer.
If you are concerned that you are developing gum disease and you would like to explore your treatment options, please call us at 410.381.0505 to schedule an appointment.