Gum disease is something you may not even realize you have. Symptoms may not become visible until the disease is in more advanced stages. If you answer yes to having these symptoms, it’s time to visit your dentist in Santa Monica, California, Dr. Dall’Olmo and Associates.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
Many gum disease symptoms are subtle. We brush them off as a one-time thing or attribute them to another issue. However, they’re something you need to take notice of. Have you noticed yourself having any of these signs?
- Red, swollen gums
- Tenderness in the gums
- Bleeding when brushing your teeth or flossing
- Constant bad breath
- Gums pulling away from the teeth, making your teeth look longer
- Loose or separating teeth
- Pus between your gums and teeth
- Mouth sores
Sure, things like bleeding during flossing can happen even without gum disease. Getting through some particularly close teeth can make your hand slip and hit the gums hard. However, make sure you’re taking notice of these signs. If you’re even a little suspicious of gum disease, contact your Santa Monica, CA dentist.
Why Worry About Gum Disease?
While gum disease obviously affects your mouth, there are other, bigger worries that can accompany gum disease. For instance, it’s linked to severe conditions like heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and some forms of cancer. Why is this?
The mouth is a key entryway to the rest of your body. Any cuts or anything in the mouth can lead to the bacteria from gum disease getting in there and entering the bloodstream. This carries bacteria throughout the entire body.
Heart disease, in particular, is connected to gum disease. The bacteria from gum disease contributes to having more LDL cholesterol. This is the form of cholesterol that’s small and dense, making it the worst kind for your arteries. Oral bacteria can also make the walls of the arteries more porous, meaning there’s a better chance for this cholesterol to get into those arteries. The cholesterol can stick to the walls of the arteries better with this bacteria as well.
What to Do if You Think You Have Gum Disease
If you think that you’re suffering from gum disease, it’s important to call your dentist right away. The earlier it’s caught, the easier it is to treat. Your dentist will evaluate your condition and develop a treatment plan personalized to how serious your particular case is.
Scaling and root planing is done when the disease is caught pretty early. A deep cleaning is done, getting into the pockets of the gums and tooth root. This removes plaque buildup and bacteria, ensuring that the disease doesn’t further eat away at the mouth.
If the disease has progressed further, surgery may be required. If your gums have receded far enough to expose the nerves and roots of the teeth, a gum graft will be required. It can also damage the jaw bone itself if it’s far enough along. In this case, you’ll need a bone graft as well.
At our dentist office, we’re also proud to offer laser treatment for gum disease. If you have moderate gum disease, this may be an option for you. The laser can go deep into the gums to remove the bacteria and also promote the natural healing of the gums. This option is minimally invasive, meaning it reduces swelling, pain, and recovery time.
Gum Disease Treatment at Your Dentist in Santa Monica, California
If you recognize your experience in these symptoms of gum disease, it’s time to get treatment before it gets worse. Call us today or request an appointment online!