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Periodontal/Gum Disease in Naples, FL

Periodontal (gum) disease is one of the most common health problems among American adults, but it is highly preventable and easily treatable in its early stages. Armed with the knowledge of how periodontal disease develops and the right measures for prevention, you can keep your gums healthy and avoid costly dental problems that result from untreated periodontitis.

Causes of Periodontal Disease

There are many different reasons gum disease may develop, and some may not be preventable. Still, when you know you have a predisposition to periodontal disease, you can reduce your risk by scheduling a consultation with a periodontist to create a more effective preventive routine. Here's a closer look at some of the preventable and unavoidable causes of gum disease that everyone should be aware of.

  • Poor oral hygiene – Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease, and it is frequently caused by neglecting to floss and rinse effectively. While most adults brush their teeth properly, many skip the step of flossing, which is necessary to remove plaque and tartar that builds up in the tiny spaces between the teeth that brushing cannot reach.
  • Genetics – If gum disease runs in your family, you may be more likely to develop it yourself.
  • Medications – Prescription medications that have the side effect of dry mouth can increase the risk of gum disease, since saliva protects the mouth from bacteria that can eat away at the gum tissue.
  • Other illnesses – Certain illnesses may lead to gum disease—especially those that cause reduced immune function such as cancer. Diabetes also makes patients more prone to infections, making gingivitis and more severe periodontitis more likely.
  • Smoking – Gum disease is among the conditions on the long list of health effects caused by smoking, which may also lead to yellowing of the teeth, tooth decay, and bone loss. Therefore, quitting may be the best thing you can do for your oral health if you are a smoker.

Signs and Symptoms

The first sign of gum disease is minor inflammation and bleeding gums. You may not notice early gum disease (gingivitis) on your own, but a regular checkup with the dentist can reveal the problem. At this stage, gum disease is easily treated with an improved daily oral hygiene routine and follow-up visits with the dentist. As gum disease progresses, it may cause painful chewing, chronic bad breath, receding gums, and sensitivity in the teeth. If periodontal disease is allowed to continue progressing without treatment, it may lead to severe gum recession and tooth loss, which can require extensive oral surgery to repair.

With treatment at the office of Dr. Brad Piotrowski, DDS, you can get on the path to better gum health for an overall healthier smile. Schedule a consultation to assess your periodontal health by calling (239) 263-6003. As a member of the American Academy of Periodontology, American Dental Association, and Florida Dental Association, Dr. Piotrowski provides excellent care for patients in Naples with a wide range of treatment options utilizing sedation dentistry for ultimate comfort.

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