Is Gum Disease a Serious Problem?
You may hear quite a bit about gum disease when you visit your dentist or watch a dental product commercial, but the condition is not as widely discussed as many other health issues. Nevertheless, gum disease affects approximately 80% of the adult population in America, and is the number one cause of permanent tooth loss. The best chance of defeating gum disease lies in detecting and treating it early; as a chronic illness, gum disease is incurable once it sets in and will continue to grow worse until stopped. Chandler dentist, Dr. Mark Arooni, helps you protect your smile by exploring the destructive mechanisms of gum disease and how you can prevent or treat it.
The Silent Epidemic
The devastating effects of gum disease begin with the excessive accumulation of bacteria. At any given time, a healthy human mouth contains about 600 different identifiable kinds of bacteria, which come together and form the sticky biofilm called dental plaque. Among these germs lies one that experts and researchers are very familiar with, called Porphyromonas gingivalis, which avoids your immune system’s attempts to destroy it by manipulating its inflammatory response. The result? Excessive inflammation in your gingival tissue (gums), often accompanied by bleeding and the gradual separation of your gums from your teeth, marks the beginning stage of gum disease.
Incurable, but Not Inevitable
When the earliest stage of gum disease, called gingivitis, begins to develop, there is a small window of opportunity during which the infection can be reversed with periodontal therapy and an improved dental hygiene routine. When the window closes, your approach may change, but the priority remains treating the condition before excessive damage can be done to your teeth and gums. Treating gum disease depends on the severity of the case, but you can prevent gum disease, or control it if you’ve already been afflicted with it, by strictly adhering to a good hygiene routine and a schedule of dental checkups and cleanings as often as Dr. Arooni recommends.
Treating Gum Disease with Your Chandler Dentist
To exacerbate the seriousness of gum disease, numerous studies have suggested that the mechanisms leading to the development of gum disease (i.e., microbial invasion and soft-tissue inflammation) may be factors in an increased risk of serious systemic illness, including heart disease and dementia. If you believe that you may be in danger of gum disease, or to learn more about protecting and improving your smile, then schedule an appointment with your Chandler dentist by calling 480-855-1200. Located in the 85224 area, Lakeview Dental Care proudly serves patients from Chandler, Gilbert, Ahwatukee, Mesa, Tempe, Phoenix, and all surrounding communities.
By Mark Arooni DDS