Common types of gum disease

Most people suffer from at least one case of mild gum disease in their lifetime. It is estimated that between 50 and 90% of the UK have had some degree of gum disease. It is the biggest cause of tooth loss in adults. There are three common types of gum disease: gingivitis, periodontitis and Acute Necrotizing Ulcerative Gingivitis. In most cases, the patient may not even notice that they have a gum disease, as they usually tend to be painless. Despite this, gum disease is very serious and can be linked to heart disease, diabetes, strokes, digestive disorder and respiratory disease. It all begins with brushing teeth properly, to prevent the plaque build-up. Some people may have irregular teeth making it hard to clean them with a regular toothbrush. The bacterium causes the gums to inflame and this can lead to gum diseases.

Gingivitis

The most common disease that affects the gums is Gingivitis. This begins with bacterial growth in the mouth and may end in tooth loss. That is why treatment is crucial. The most common form of Gingivitis is a chronic form induced by plaque. Symptoms include red, swollen gums that bleed easily. Treatment for Gingivitis involves removing the bacteria that binds to your teeth every day. This may mean professional teeth cleaning by a dentist or hygienist. Education regarding daily dental hygiene methods and the repair of any dental problems is also important. Good oral hygiene, regular dental checks, not smoking, eating a healthy diet and keeping stress under control help to reduce the risk of Gingivitis occurring.

Periodontitis

Periodontitis occurs when inflammation or infection of the gums (Gingivitis) is left untreated or treatment is delayed. This form of gum disease occurs when the gums pull away from the teeth and form pockets that become infected. The tooth then becomes loose and may fall out. The treatment starts with improving dental hygiene drastically, though it depends on the stage of Periodontitis the patient is at, early, moderate or advanced. If the patient suffers from an advanced form of Periodontitis, they will probably need to have their teeth scaled in order to remove the hard build-up of calculus on the teeth.

Acute Necrotizing Ulcerative Gingivitis

Acute Necrotizing Ulcerative Gingivitis presents as an acute infection of the gingiva without the involvement of the other tissues of the periodontium. This form of gum disease is often referred to as “Trench Mouth” or “Vincents Angina” and commonly affects people around the ages of 15 – 35. This form of gum disease is a rare form of bacterial infection. The symptoms include bleeding or red gums, swelling, bad taste or bad breath.

How to avoid gum disease?

Once again, regular brushing, flossing and using a mouthwash is crucial in avoiding gum diseases. However, once the disease has developed, more intensive treatments are necessary. Diet, fluoride treatments and regular dental examinations are also very important in avoiding and keeping gum disease at bay. Smoking affects your gums greatly, and stopping will mean a much lower chance of developing gum disease.