What Is Gingivitis and Why Should I Care?

Test Your Smarts: GingivitisGingivitis is a term that dentists and dental hygienists use when talking about gum disease. Gums form a seal with your teeth, keeping them tightly positioned in your mouth, and making sure bacteria cannot slip into your bloodstream. Healthy gums are pinkish in color, firm to the touch, and cling snugly onto each tooth. Unhealthy gums may be paler or bright red, and they may be sensitive or bleed when you brush and floss. Gingivitis can also cause bad breath, and more A gum disease screening is the first step in avoiding serious periodontal issues.

Minor Problems From Early Gingivitis

Some signs of untreated gingivitis include:
Chronic bad breath that doesn’t go away with brushing
Bleeding when brushing or flossing
Sensitive gums
Gum recession (pulling away where the tooth root meets the gum)

The good news is that early stage gingivitis can often be reversed with careful home care. If we notice signs of gingivitis at regularly scheduled office visit, we can instruct you the needed steps to stop it before it goes further.

When Gingivitis is not Treated

Some sign of gingivitis, progressing towards periodontal disease include:
Loosened teeth
Loss of one or more teeth
Infections in the blood stream
Increased risk of infection during surgery

Untreated gingivitis can progress to periodontal disease. Periodontal disease must be treated by a dentist. It may involve procedures such as scaling or root planing, that get at infection deep beneath the gums. Your dentist can help you correct periodontal problems and regain your oral health.