Periodontal Disease: Explained in simple terms

In a previous newsletter we explained what plaque is and the effects it has on our gums. If plaque isn’t being removed effectively with good brushing technique and regular flossing, thenover a period of time periodontal disease can happen.

Periodontal disease is a way of your body protecting itself from life threatening infection. If the tooth root is covered in plaque, which is effectively a thick colony of nasty bacteria, then the body’s defences come in to action. The tooth surface does not shed itself, like other surfaces in the human body, and the only way your body can get rid of the bacteria on the tooth root surface is to eventually eject the entire tooth from the body. The progression of periodontal disease is the slow loss of the tooth by loss of gum support, and the bone which holds the tooth in place, as the gum retreats away from the plaque, and the tooth.

 

Often this can happen over a period of time, without presenting any major symptoms. The only time you will be aware of a problem, is when a tooth becomes loose, or you get pain and swelling on the gum. Every time you have an examination, we carry out a BPE ( Basic Periodontal Examination), which is a way of screening for gum disease.

 

Current research, and our recent experience shows that progression of periodontal disease can be delayed or even stopped, with early treatment, followed by improved oral hygiene. We believe that it makes far more sense to try and keep your natural teeth, with healthy gums, instead of just allowing the teeth to be lost due to periodontal disease, and then having a set of dentures.

 

 

Some signs to look out for include:
sore, tender or bleeding gums, persistent bad breath, a change in the way your teeth bite together, teeth that are longer in appearance, pus between your gums and teeth and a change in the fit of partial dentures.
Good Oral hygiene measures at home like brushing effectively morning and night and flossing regularly will keep bacteria at a level that the mouth can handle. When you come in for your check ups and hygiene visits, we can monitor this and give useful tips to help you.

 

Several theories exist to
explain the link between periodontal disease and heart disease. One theory is
that oral bacteria can affect the heart when they
enter the blood stream, attaching to fatty plaques in the coronary
arteries (heart blood vessels) and contributing to clot formation
Researchers have found that people
with periodontal disease are almost twice as likely to suffer from coronary
artery disease as those without periodontal disease
.’

 

Taken from www.perio.org
Other factors which affect the health of your gums are the following:
  • Smoking
  • Genetics
  • Pregnancy
  • Stress
  • Diabetes
  • Other Systemic Diseases
For more information ask your dentist.

Invisalign Open Evening

After the success of our open evening last December, we will be holding another open evening on the
14th of November. More details to come in our October Newsletter.
At the evening there will be exclusive special offers with limited appointments so make sure to book in advance.