Periodontal disease (also known as periodontitis and gum disease) is a progressive disease that impacts the supporting and surrounding tissue of the gums, and also the underlying jawbone. If left untreated, periodontal disease can result in loose, unstable teeth, and even tooth loss. Periodontal disease is in fact the leading cause of tooth loss in adults in the developed world and should not be taken lightly.
Periodontal disease begins when the toxins found in plaque start to attack the soft or gingival tissue surrounding the teeth. This bacterium embeds itself in the gum and rapidly breeds, causing a bacterial infection. As the infection progresses, it starts to burrow deeper into the tissue causing inflammation or irritation between the teeth and gums. The response of the body is to destroy the infected tissue, which is why the gums appear to recede. The resulting pockets between the teeth deepen and, if no treatment is sought, the tissue that makes up the jawbone will end up receding, which cases unstable teeth and tooth loss.
Types of Periodontal Diseases:
Periodontal disease occurs in many forms. Regardless of the various forms of periodontal diseases, they all require immediate attention by a dental professional.
Immediate attention will allow your dentist to stop the development of the disease and preserve the gum tissue and bone from damage.
Periodontal Diseases and Treatments:
The most common signs of periodontal disease are observed in Gingivitis – a mild inflammation of the gums. When toxins colonize in the plaque it leads to gingivitis. Those who are most susceptible to gingivitis are women who consume birth control or are pregnant, steroid users, individuals who maintain blood pressure and seizures via medication, and uncontrolled diabetics.
Treatment: Gingivitis is easily reversible using a solid combination of home care and professional cleaning. The dentist may perform root planing and deep scaling procedures to cleanse the pockets of debris. A combination of antibiotics and medicated mouthwashes may be used to kill any remaining bacteria and promote the healing of the pockets.
Chronic Periodontal Disease
Chronic Periodontal Disease is the most common form of periodontitis and is more prevalent in individuals who are over 45 years old. The inflammation of the gum line, gradual gum recession, destruction of the bone tissue and gingival are some common features of chronic periodontal disease.
Treatment: The supportive tissue in the gums cannot be reconstructed in chronic periodontitis and cannot be entirely cured. Nonetheless, through root planing, scaling and antimicrobial procedures, the development of can be stopped. If essential, tissue grafting and pocket reduction surgery is performed to fortify the bone and improve the physical features of the oral cavity.
Aggressive Periodontal Disease
Essentially, aggressive periodontal disease is the same as chronic periodontitis but instead develops much more rapidly. The loss of bone tissue and gum attachment, and genetic predisposition are causes of aggressive periodontal disease. Smokers and those with a familial history of the disease are much more likely to develop aggressive periodontal disease.
Treatment: Since aggressive periodontal disease is the same as chronic periodontitis, the treatments are also similar. However, aggressive periodontitis patients are more likely to go through a surgical procedure. Although treatment is more complex, through root planing, scaling and antimicrobial procedures, your dentist will attempt to stop the development of the disease.
Periodontal Disease Relating to Systemic Conditions:
Periodontal disease can be an indication of an underlying condition impacting the rest of the body. The way in which aggressive periodontal disease behaves is contingent upon the original illness. Other factors include diabetes, heart disease, and respiratory disease.
Treatment: First and foremost, the disease that instigated the periodontitis must be maintained. The development of the disease is prevented through remedies equivalent to aggressive and chronic periodontal disease.
Necrosis and Periodontal Disease
People who have HIV are more likely to suffer from necrosis (tissue death) that worsens at a fast pace. Those who smoke are more likely to suffer from immunosuppression, malnutrition, or chronic stress and are also candidates for the disease. The periodontal ligament, alveolar bone, and gingival tissues are the areas often impacted. The disease rapidly worsens and is more prevalent among people who suffer from HIV, immunosuppression, malnutrition, and chronic stress. Those who choose to smoke are also highly susceptible. Tissue death (necrosis) frequently affects the gingival tissues, periodontal ligament, and alveolar bone.
Treatment: The common forms of treatment for necrotizing periodontitis includes root planing, scaling, medicated mouthwash, fungicidal medicines and antibiotic pills. Even though necrotizing periodontitis is highly uncommon, it is plausible for the dentist to check with a certified physician prior to any treatment.
Please ask your dentist if you have any question about the different types of periodontal disease and treatments.