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Gum Disease & Gum Care: Information, Prevention & Care

Gum disease can threaten your oral health and cause other problems. Our Calgary dentists explain how to prevent periodontitis and improve gum health.

What is Gum Disease?

Gum (periodontal) disease is caused by plaque – bacteria that build up on your teeth and create toxins. These toxins affect the gum tissue and bones surrounding the teeth.

Despite the fact that it may be initially painless and progress slowly, gum disease can have serious consequences. Not only could you lose your teeth, but this infection can also increase your risk for heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. This is because gum health is interconnected with many other aspects of oral and physical health. This makes the management and prevention of this disease vital.

Types of Gum Disease

The two types of gum disease include:

Gingivitis

Gingivitis is early-stage gum disease. At this point, gums may become sensitive, red, and swollen, and you may spot blood in your toothbrush or when you floss.

Periodontitis

Periodontitis is the most severe form of periodontal disease. At this stage, the gums recede and bacteria colonize the spaces between the gums and teeth. Mild to moderate jawbone loss is also possible.

Advanced Periodontitis

Teeth lose support as your gums, bone, and periodontal ligament break down. Moderate to severe bone loss in your jaw may occur, and your teeth can become loose or fall out.

How to Maintain & Improve Gum Health

Though gum disease has scary outcomes, many cases are preventable with good oral hygiene and regular checkups. Here’s what you can do at home and how your dentist can help:

At Home

    • Brush at least twice daily
    • Floss once per day
    • Rinse thoroughly with an alcohol-free anti-gingivitis mouthwash
    • See your dentist regularly and let them know about any changes, gum sensitivity or soreness

What Your Dentist Can Do for Your Gums

Your dentist will be completed routine oral examinations and cleaning which can help them to spot issues when they first begin.

They will ask if you have noticed any changes or sensitivity in your gums if you have been following your regular oral hygiene routine, and if you can answer questions regarding oral hygiene and care.

Treatments for Gum Disease

There are a number of potential options out there for the treatment of gum disease including:

Preventive Hygiene

To treat early-stage gum disease, we recommend frequent hygiene appointments, deep cleanings and specialized home care routines.

Gum Grafts

This surgical procedure thickens gums, protects against the damaging effects of gum recession and can help improve the appearance of your smile.

Pinhole Gum Rejuvenation Surgery

The Chao Pinhole® Surgical Technique is a scalpel- and suture-free gum recession treatment option. A dentist makes a small hole in the patient's existing gum tissue using a needle and then uses special instruments to gently loosen the gum tissue. The gum line is adjusted gently to conceal the root structure.

Teeth & Gum Contouring

These cosmetic procedures can enhance the overall appearance of your smile. Tooth contouring involves shaving away excess tooth material and reshaping chipped, uneven, or poorly aligned teeth with a dental drill, while excess gum tissue is removed to contour or lift gums.

Are you in need of a thorough oral examination or dental cleaning? Contact our Calgary dentists to request an appointment with us today.

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