What is gingivitis?

Tulsa dentistryGingivitis is an oral condition that can signal the onset of gum disease. If caught early, gingivitis is reversible. There are multiple symptoms which means a visit to your dentist is indicated.

Symptoms of Gingivitis

Bleeding gums – If your gums bleed when brushing it is likely that you are using the wrong tools or exerting too much pressure. You should be using a soft bristle toothbrush; you do not need to scrub your teeth to clean them. If gum tissue is bleeding unprovoked, your gingiva may be in trouble. Do not delay in seeing your dentist.

Swollen, red gum tissue – Healthy gums are pink and firm. If you notice a change in the appearance of your gums, this is abnormal.

Chronic bad breath – There are many foods and beverages that contribute to bad breath; if you suffer from a sour taste or bad breath that does not go away when brushing or using a mouthwash, this may signify that you are dealing with an underlying condition that requires treatment.

Gums pulling away from teeth or teeth feel loose – You are on the fast track to periodontitis, a much more serious form of gum disease. Failure to seek treatment quickly may result in tooth loss.

Reasons Gum Disease Can Develop

There are a few main causes for the onset of gingivitis:

Tobacco use – Whether smoked or chewed, individuals who use tobacco are much more likely to develop gum disease and suffer from tooth loss.

Daily neglect – You should brush at least twice every day with a fluoridated toothpaste, and floss daily to remove what your toothbrush missed.

Lack of regular dentistry – You should see your dental provider every six months for cleaning and dental exam. Once you have been diagnosed with periodontal disease, those cleaning visits are usually required more frequently to maintain dental health.

Gum Disease Treatment 

If caught early, a thorough cleaning coupled with an antibacterial rinse and a good home care regimen will usually be sufficient to prevent disease advancement.

If gingivitis has advanced to periodontitis, a deep cleaning (root planing and scaling) or maybe even surgery will be needed to save your teeth. Gum disease can affect one or multiple teeth so don’t get lulled into believing that discomfort affecting just one area is not serious.

Be vigilant with your daily oral care and visit our team at Howl Dental as recommended.