Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease is the result of an infection in your gums and bone surrounding your teeth. Gum disease is considered by some at the most prevalent disease in humanity. It is important to treat immediately and be thorough and diligent about its treatment. When addressed early, we have very good success with treating gum disease. It has been shown that periodontal disease increases the risks dramatically for heart disease, lung disease, stroke, and has been known to be associated with low birth weight babies. We also know periodontal disease is contagious and should be treated immediately to minimize bone loss and other complications. Waiting on treatment may cause more bone loss that can lead to surgeries, tooth loss, and other more costly, extensive treatments.
 
Gum disease is one of the top reasons for adult tooth loss. It is caused by a buildup of sticky bacteria (plaque) on the teeth, lack of visits to the dentist for periodontal examinations and cleanings, tartar build up, and prolonged inflammation. Plaque buildup creates toxins that will damage your gums, and cause teeth to become loose, fall out, or need to be removed by a dentist.
 
The early stage of gum disease, gingivitis, is very treatable and can be controlled with good oral hygiene habits and regular dental appointments. When left untreated, gingivitis will turn into the more serious periodontitis. Periodontitis can lead to tissue and bone loss which will grow into bigger and bigger issues over time.
 
At Kellogg Dental, your dentist will check for signs of periodontal disease during your regular exam. They will measure the space between your teeth and gums and assign any necessary treatment. Depending on the severity of your case, your dentist may recommend a non-surgical treatment such as scaling and root planing (SRP) or periodontal prophy. SRP is a periodontitis treatment done in-office by your Kellogg Dental team. They will carefully remove the plaque and tartar from your teeth and roots, then they will smooth any rough spots on the roots to prevent bacteria from building up again. This is totally painless! Periodontal fluoride is an at-home treatment designed to deliver medication deep into the gum tissue as a means to fight infections as well. 
 
There are many ways you can prevent the development of periodontal disease. The most important way you can be proactive against this disease is to maintain your regular dental checkups. Good oral care at home is vital to the prevention of gum disease. Brush and floss your teeth twice a day, maintain a balanced diet, and schedule regular dental visits. Kellogg Dental will partner with you to keep your smile strong and healthy.
 

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