To many people, gingivitis and gum disease mean two different things. Unfortunately, this leads many of them to believe that gingivitis isn’t really a serious problem and, unlike gum disease, isn’t something that they need to worry about. The truth is that gingivitis aren’t different conditions, they’re merely different stages of the same problem. When gingivitis develops, it means that more extensive gum disease is right behind it, and the only way to protect your smile from it is to address your gingivitis as soon as possible after it shows up.
Why it’s important to know early
When you know that gingivitis leads to more serious gum disease, the importance of treating it becomes much more apparent. Like many other oral health concerns, gum disease is progressive, and it doesn’t take very long to become a more significant threat to your oral health. Gum disease describes the systematic erosion of your gum tissues and the periodontal ligaments that support your teeth roots. In its later stages, it can also erode the jawbone structure underneath your gums, leading to significantly higher risks of losing one or more teeth.
The signs that are often overlooked
Gingivitis is the infection that develops in your gums and leads to progressive gum disease before long. This infection is the result of oral bacteria gathering excessively along your gum line and working their way to the surfaces of your teeth roots. At first, the signs of gingivitis may be easy to miss or overlook as serious warning signs. However, they’re often distinctive nevertheless, and some of the easiest signs of gingivitis to overlook can include:
- Redness and swelling in your gums
- Changing colors in your gum tissues
- One or more loose teeth
- Bleeding in your gums when you brush and floss
- Gum recession (the pulling away of your gums from your teeth)
- And more
What to do if you have gingivitis
If you notice any signs that your gums may be affected by gingivitis, then the most important thing to do is to schedule an appointment with your dentist. Even if it isn’t time for your routine scheduled checkup and cleaning, having your dentist assess, diagnose, and treat your gingivitis as soon as possible is necessary to stop it from progressing. If treated early, gingivitis may be effectively controlled with the help of periodontal cleaning, or scaling and root planing. The procedure involves carefully cleaning all of the bacteria off of the surfaces of your teeth roots, thereby allowing your gums to heal and reattach to your teeth.
Learn how to deal with gingivitis early
Gingivitis can be successfully dealt with in its early stages, but only if you recognize and seek treatment for it early. To learn more, schedule an appointment with us by calling Dreem Dentistry in Leawood, KS, today at 913-681-5500. We also serve patients who live in Overland Park and all surrounding communities.