Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing is a sign of gingivitis, the first stage of periodontal disease, also known as gum disease. Gingivitis is followed by periodontitis, which is a gum infection that affects the soft tissue and bone. Left untreated, the teeth may become loose and fall out. The risk of heart attack, stroke, and other health conditions may increase. Therefore, it is critical to seek treatment if you notice any signs or symptoms of gum disease. Ottawa dentist Dr. France Chevalier believes in education to help patients avoid gum disease and other conditions that affect oral and overall health.
The difference between gingivitis and periodontitis
When patients have gingivitis, bacteria plaque accumulates on the surface of the teeth. This can lead to red and inflamed gums and gums that bleed when brushing or flossing. This stage of gum disease is reversible, unlike the advanced stages of gum disease. With periodontitis, the gum and bone pulls away from the teeth. Debris collects in the pockets of space between the gums and teeth, leading to infection. The immune system attacks bacteria as the plaque spread below the gum line and the toxins produced by the bacteria cause the bone and tissue to break down. Teeth become loose and can fall out.
Recognizing symptoms of gum disease
It is important to know the warning signs of gum disease so you can seek treatment immediately if they appear. They include:
- Inflamed gums
- Red gums
- Tender gums
- Receding gums
- Spaces between the teeth
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Dentures that do not fit properly
Risk factors of gum disease include tobacco use, stress, genetics, and age. Regardless of the cause of the disease, Dr. Chevalier can provide treatment that can reduce or eliminate pain and other symptoms. For treatment, she will examine your mouth, teeth, and gums. X-rays may be taken to examine the jawbone and soft tissues. Then, a treatment plan will be tailored to meet your needs. If you have noticed any warning signs or symptoms of gum disease, call our team today at 613-233-1118 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Chevalier.
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