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Gingivitis and periodontitis
Does it bleed when you use dental floss? Do you have bad breath? Do you have red, swollen and bleeding gums? Have you noticed that your teeth appear to be longer? Do you feel that your teeth have become loose? Does it feel like your teeth are drifting? Do you think that the gaps between your teeth have become bigger? Do you have a lot of calculus?
If your answer is “yes” to one or more of this questions you might have gingivitis. Gingivitis occurs because of plaque between your teeth and along your gingiva. When you brush your teeth you only get to reach 3 out of 5 surfaces per tooth. If you can’t a reach between your teeth it is going to be plaque residues there. In this plaque there are bacteria. The bacteria cause an inflammation in the gingiva. The inflammation makes the gingiva red, swollen and prone for bleeding. You can remove this plaque by using dental floss. You can also use toothpicks and interdental brushes. It is important that you choose the right method adjusted to your teeth. The different methods have their own techniques. For best result you must choose the right equipment adjusted to your teeth and use the right techniques. Contact us if you feel unsure. Interdental flossing is an easy way to prevent or cease gingivitis. Regularly the gingiva will heal within 2 weeks if you use dental floss on daily basis combined with regular use of a tooth brush.
Untreated gingivitis can lead to tooth loosening
If gingivitis is left untreated it can spread to the alveolar bone. If the inflammation reaches the alveolar bone it can make the alveolar bone retract. The alveolar bone is the bone surrounding and retaining your teeth. This inflammation is called periodontitis or tooth loosening. When it comes to periodontitis you have “pockets” around your teeth in addition to the same symptoms as with gingivitis. These “pockets” are loose flaps of gingiva that do not adhere to the tooth surface as opposed to healthy gingiva. These pockets are hard to clean by use of regular dental care and often accumulate plaque and bacteria. If the bacteria is not removed the inflammation persists. If the dentist takes an x-ray you can see that the alveolar bone has retracted. If the alveolar bone retracts the teeth loose retention and may therefore feel loose. If the inflammation persists over a longer time your teeth can eventually become completely loose and fall out. Except for inadequate oral hygiene periodontitis can have genetic causes or be facilitated by smoking. To treat periodontitis the same procedures apply as with gingivitis, interdental brushes being most effective. If you smoke the treatment will be more effective if you quit. In addition you need professional help from a dentist or dental hygienist to clean eventual deep pockets. For achieving the best result you should visit your dentist or dental hygienist every 3rd month.
Correlation between periodontitis and cardiovascular disease
The oral cavity is a part of the body and if you have untreated periodontitis there is a risk for the bacteria to spread to other parts of your body. Research has shown a correlation between periodontitis and diabetes, increased risk of heart infarction, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. Therefore it is also important for your general health to treat periodontitis. Click here to take the first and most important step in treating your periodontitis and make a dental appointment now.