Periodontal diseases are inflammatory diseases that affect the gingiva and other tissues that support the teeth. Periodontal diseases are responsible for 70% of tooth loss in adults. When these diseases are diagnosed earlier, they can be treated easily and successfully. Prevention or treatment of gingival diseases also brings other benefits such as the protection of natural teeth, more comfortable chewing and better digestion. Periodontal diseases begin with gingivitis. In other words, gingivitis is the early period of periodontal disease. During this period, the gums are bleeding, red and enlarged. In the early period, it may not cause much discomfort, except for bad breath (halitosis). If left untreated, the disease may progress and cause inflammation of the periodontal tissues (periodontitis), causing irreversible damage to the gingiva and alveolar bone that supports the teeth.
Periodontitis is an advanced stage in periodontal diseases. Damage occurs in the alveolar bone along with other tissues that support the teeth. A “periodontal pocket”, a space where bacteria can easily settle, forms between the tooth and gingiva. The presence of periodontal pocket facilitates the localization of the infection and the progression of the disease. As the disease progresses, there are losses in the supporting tissues and the teeth begin to swing, and as a result, the teeth may need to be extracted.
What are the symptoms of gingival diseases?
There are many symptoms of gingival diseases;
Bleeding gums while brushing teeth
Red, swollen and tender gums
Gingiva that can be easily separated from the teeth
Inflammatory discharge between the teeth and gums
Teeth that are swinging or moving away from each other (formation of gaps between teeth or increasing existing gaps)
Changes in the relation between the upper and lower teeth during biting action
Changes and deterioration in partial prosthesis fit.
Persistent bad breath
However, periodontal disease can reach advanced stages without showing any symptoms. For this reason, it is extremely important to visit the dentist regularly.
What is the cause of a gingival disease?
The most important cause of gingival disease is the sticky and colorless film layer called “bacterial dental plaque” that accumulates on the teeth. Cleaning dental plaque with daily brushing and flossing is the basic requirement for a healthy mouth. If plaque is not effectively removed from the teeth, it turns into an irregular surface and permeable structure known as tartar, and accumulation on this surface becomes easier. Harmful products released by the bacteria in the plaque cause discomfort for the gingiva. Due to these products, the fibers that tightly bind the gingiva to the tooth lose their properties, the gingiva moves away from the tooth and a periodontal pocket is formed. Thus, it is easier for bacteria and their products to progress to deeper tissues. As the disease progresses, the pocket gets deeper, the bacteria proceeds deeper towards to the bone, and destruction begins in the alveolar bone that supports the tooth. If the disease is left untreated, eventually the teeth will swing and may even need extractions.
Bacterial plaque is a colorless accumulation of bacteria that constantly forms on the tooth surface. The buildup of bacterial plaque can cause stains to become stuck on the teeth and is a primary factor in gingival problems. Bacterial plaque begins to form 4 to 12 hours after brushing the teeth, therefore brushing your teeth at least twice a day and flossing daily is very important.
Tartar is a rough deposit on the teeth that retains stains and causes discoloration. It forms a very strong bond with the tooth and can only be cleaned by a dentist. Everyone’s susceptibility to bacterial plaque and tartar formation is very different from each other. For most of us, the formation of these deposits accelerates as we age.
To Prevent Tartar Formation
As recommended by your dentist, it is necessary to have the teeth professionally cleaned every 6 months, and to brush regularly in order to prevent the formation or development of tartar crystals that adhere to the tooth surface.
The treatment of gingival diseases can be performed by a specialist dentist with simple methods, and it can be ensured that the teeth remain in your mouth for long years in a healthy manner.