When Should You See a Dentist for Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease, also called gum disease, is a bacterial infection that can destroy the soft tissues and bone that support the teeth. Periodontal disease is one of the major causes of tooth loss. It can be easily managed if detected in the early stages. The following are warning signs of periodontal disease:

  • Swollen, tender and red gums
  • Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
  • Receding gum line that may uncover from the base of the teeth
  • Bad breath
  • Pus between your teeth and gums
  • Change in bite pattern
  • Loosening of the teeth
  • Change in the fit of partial dentures

lf you experience any of the warning signs mentioned above, consult your dentist right away. Your complete medical and dental history is reviewed and a thorough dental examination is performed to check for signs of periodontal disease. Dental x-rays may also be performed to evaluate the bone surrounding the roots of the teeth. A dental hygienist who works with your doctor will perform basic periodontal treatment and advise you on good oral hygiene practices and avoiding gum disease. In case of severe disease, you may be referred to a periodontist for further evaluation and treatment.

Healthy gums have a pink and firm appearance, do not bleed easily, and fit snugly around the root of your teeth. If your gums become puffy, dusky red and bleed easily you should consult a dentist as soon as possible. Periodontal disease may sometimes be linked to other health conditions. The earlier you seek dental treatment, the greater the possibility of reducing or preventing complications associated with gum disease.