Gum disease is a common condition that affects millions of Americans every year. If left untreated, it can cause serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Gum disease occurs when bacteria build up under the gums, causing them to recede or loosen. This causes food particles to get trapped between the teeth and gums, leading to tooth decay and infection.
To help you preserve your oral health, we’ve put together a guide to help you navigate gum disease that includes proper dental care tips and preventative measures to stop these systemic diseases in their tracks. Good preventive habits can prevent tooth loss and the deterioration of soft tissues from occurring in the first place. For advanced forms of gum disease, there are treatment options.
Early Gum Disease Symptoms
If you catch gum disease early enough, it can be reversed and prevented. If you notice any of these early signs of gum disease, visit our dentist immediately for an examination and we will discuss your options for treatment.
- Redness around the gums: this may be caused by bleeding beneath the gum line. It could also indicate a more severe problem with the gums.
- Bad breath: breath that smells foul or has a bad taste should always be checked out by your dentist.
- Loose teeth: teeth that feel loose should be examined by your dentist. Loose teeth can lead to other complications like jawbone deterioration.
- Painful chewing: If you experience pain while eating or drinking, this could mean there is a problem with your gums.
- Bleeding gums: you might bleed when brushing or flossing your teeth. Bleeding gums can be a sign of periodontal disease.
- Sensitive teeth: you may notice that certain foods make your teeth sensitive, such as really cold items. This could be due to gum recession or cavities.
What is gingivitis?
Gingivitis is inflammation of the gums and the earliest stage of gum disease. The most common symptom of gingivitis is redness around the gum line. Gingivitis can occur in anyone and at any age but is more likely to develop in people who smoke, drink alcohol, eat sugary foods, or have poor oral hygiene. Gingivitis is treatable and can sometimes be treated at home with routine brushing and flossing along with regular dental cleanings. In some cases, you may need some additional treatment or a deep cleaning by our dental hygienists.
How does gum disease progress?
When you have gum disease, the bacteria that live underneath the gums begin to multiply. As they grow, they release toxins that irritate the gum tissues surrounding the teeth. Over time, the tissue becomes inflamed and starts to pull away from the teeth. If not treated, gum disease can spread into deeper areas of the mouth and eventually affect the bones holding the teeth in place, including your jaw bone. As bone loss occurs, tooth loss occurs leaving your oral health in jeopardy.
What if my gum disease is advanced?
If you have an advanced form of gum disease such as severe periodontitis, it is likely too late for preventive measures. At this point, periodontal treatment is your best option. There are several different types of treatments available by our dental professionals depending on how far advanced your periodontitis is.
What is Periodontitis?
Periodontitis is a bacterial infection that attacks the tissues surrounding your teeth. The most common symptoms include redness, swelling, and bleeding around the gums. In some cases, the bone supporting your teeth will begin to deteriorate and the bone will pull away from the teeth. Periodontitis is more severe than gingivitis. Periodontitis is potentially reversible with new technology we have today. Prevention is always preferable but with new laser technology we have the ability to improve your periodontal condition to a much higher level of health.
Holistic Treatment for Gum Disease
At Holistic Dental Center, we believe in using natural and holistic treatments, always looking for the least invasive way to treat your dental problems, including advanced periodontitis. Some dentists only treat the symptoms of severe gum disease. Treatments like scaling and root planing accompanied with the latest diagnostic and treatment protocols that are biocompatible will improve your treatment outcome.
At Holistic Dental Center, we offer more natural alternatives to treating chronic periodontitis:
- LANAP Laser Treatment: LANAP (Laser-Assisted New Attachment Procedure) is the only FDA-cleared laser surgery for the treatment of periodontal disease. Our dentist will insert a small fiber into the infected pocket to kill germs and infected tissue. Next, they will remove the calculus with an ultrasonic root cleaner, and then laser energy is used to make the soft gum pocket tissues “sticky” and create a seal.
- Ozone Therapy: Ozone therapy kills harmful cells while simultaneously supporting our healthy, native cells. Our holistic dentists use ozonated water to gently clean below the gumline and encourage better circulation for enhanced healing.
Gum Disease Prevention
To prevent gum disease from developing into early or advanced stages, it’s important to visit our dentist regularly. Early detection and treatment can reduce the risk of complications and prevent diseases such as cardiovascular disease and coronary artery disease.
As biological and holistic practitioners, we understand the intricate relationship between oral and systemic diseases. Holistic periodontal therapy is an approach that addresses the root cause of gum disease and prevents it from worsening. Through biological periodontal treatment, people maintain the health of their teeth and gums.
Here are some things you can do to prevent gum disease:
- Brush twice daily and floss at least once per day.
- Don’t smoke. Smoking has been linked to gum disease.
- Limit sugary drinks. Sugary drinks increase plaque buildup which leads to gum disease.
- Visit the dentist regularly. We recommend getting holistic gum treatments every 3 to 4 months.
Visit Our Office Today
At the Holistic Dental Center of New Jersey, we offer holistic gum treatments through a series of biological periodontal therapies. Our protocol is designed to help patients not just treat the symptoms of gum disease but address the dental disease at its core.
We offer a wide variety of treatment options to keep your oral health in top shape, including our ozone therapy or phase contrast microscopy. We take pride in helping our patients achieve their best oral health. Don’t wait until gum disease strikes to contact us. Call us today and set up your holistic dental cleanings today.