How Does Gingivitis Develop?

Gums that are pink in color and do not bleed when brushing or flossing are considered by dentists as healthy. If your gums feel swollen, are colored red, and bleed whenever you brush and floss, it is best to consult your dentist immediately since you may already have gingivitis. 

Gingivitis refers to the inflammation of the tissues surrounding and supporting the teeth. It is the initial stage of gum disease and the easiest to treat.

Causes, Signs and Symptoms

How does gingivitis develop? The development of this gum disease is typically attributed to poor dental hygiene.

The primary cause of gingivitis is plaque, a colorless biofilm of bacteria that is commonly found on one’s teeth and gums. Proper and regular brushing and flossing can remove plaque, but failure to practice good dental care habits means the bacteria remains on your teeth. This biofilm soon produces toxins which irritate the gum tissue, causing gingivitis. During this stage, damage can still be reversed because the bone and connective tissue that hold the teeth in place are not yet affected. Untreated gingivitis, however, can become periodontitis and cause permanent damage to a person’s teeth and jaw.

Aside from poor dental hygiene, the following can also cause gingivitis:

  • Persons with crooked, rotated, or overlapping teeth are more prone to developing gingivitis since they are harder to keep clean; consequently, there will be more areas for plaque and calculus to accumulate.
  • Poor immune system. Gingivitis is also a body’s inflammatory system’s response to bacteria in an area of the mouth where it should not be. Alcohol, smoking and chewing tobacco, and stress affect a person’s oral defense mechanisms and prevent the gum tissue from being able to heal. Persons suffering from cancer and undergoing cancer treatment are also more susceptible to infection and increase the risk of gum disease.
  • Poor nutrition. Persons who consume high amounts of sugar and carbohydrates with low water intake are prone to developing plaque and possible gum disease. This will increase the formation of plaque. Deficiency in certain important nutrients such as vitamin C will impair gum repair.
  • Diabetes mellitus. This disease will also impair circulation and the gums’ ability to heal.
  • Hormonal changes. Hormonal changes that occur during puberty, pregnancy, and menopause also typically correlate with a rise in gingivitis. This hormonal imbalance can cause the blood vessels in the gums to become more susceptible to a bacterial and chemical attack.

The usual signs and symptoms that a person has gingivitis include:

  • Bleeding gums when brushing and flossing

  • Red or purple colored gums

  • Tender and swollen gums

  • Receding gums or the appearance that they have been pulled away from the teeth, giving the teeth an elongated look.

Advanced gum disease can cause pockets to form between the teeth and gums which can collect plaque and food debris. Because of this, some people may experience recurring bad breath or a bad taste in their mouth.

Gingivitis Prevention

Brushing properly at least twice a day and flossing once will help you get rid of plaque. Gargling with mouthwash can help as well. Your dental (and overall) health will also improve if you start eating a balanced diet and avoid smoking or tobacco.

Regular dental checkups can also help you detect and avoid the onset of any gum disease. If you’re in Maryland, you can consult the dental professionals of Nicholas Dental Care.

Gingivitis Facts – What You Should Know

Gingivitis FactsA Few Gingivitis Facts You Need To Know

Gingivitis is one of the most dreaded dental diseases because it’s a “gateway” condition – it can easily lead to more serious complications. Moreover, it’s also one of the easiest to acquire. Therefore it is important to be informed about gingivitis. It’s important to know how it happens and what happens to you if you get it. When you have that knowledge you can take the right steps to avoid it.

Gingivitis Facts # 1 – You are an easy target

Gingivitis is easy to acquire because it stems from plaque, a sticky film of bacteria that forms in the mouth. It can also form on teeth surfaces, on the gums and on the tongue. Plaque is naturally occurring and constantly forming. In other words, everybody has it, all the time.

Thus, it’s absolutely important to maintain a strict brushing, flossing and professional dental cleaning schedule to get rid of plaque effectively. When you are inconsistent with keeping your teeth and gums clean, plaque can build up, harden, and become a magnet for bacteria that can cause damage to gum tissue.

Gingivitis Facts # 2 – It’s treatable – if you act fast

The good news is that gingivitis is the earliest stage and sign of gum disease, so it doesn’t affect the bones and tissues connected to the teeth and gums yet. The condition can be reversed if addressed quickly. Watch out for tell-tale signs that include swollen and bleeding gums, receding gums, shifting teeth due to weak gums, and bad breath. However, sometimes the symptoms may not be obvious to the naked eye. Regular visits to your Burtonsville dentist will ensure the disease will be caught during the early stages.

Gingivitis Facts # 3 – A solid dental care regimen is a must

The only way to stop gingivitis in its tracks is to practice good oral hygiene.

Brush and floss at least two times a day

Make sure to use proper brushing and flossing techniques that will enable you to remove all food particles and thoroughly clean your mouth.

Commit to regular, professional cleaning

No matter how disciplined you are about cleaning your mouth, you will still need professional cleaning to control tartar buildup and to get rid of debris and bacteria, especially in areas that your toothbrush and floss can’t reach.

Follow a healthy lifestyle

When you eat right, you are providing good nutrition to keep your teeth, gums and jawbones strong and healthy. When you avoid unhealthy habits such as eating sugary treats and smoking cigarettes, you are reducing your risks of acquiring gum disease.

For more advice on attaining optimal health for your teeth and gums, contact your Laurel, MD dentist today.

Is Gingivitis Causing Your Tooth Pain?

GingivitisCan Gingivitis Cause Tooth Pain?

When you experience a toothache, it’s easy to assume that the pain is coming from one of the teeth in one particular side or section of your mouth because that is generally where the pain is coming from.

When you visit your Laurel MD dentist to have it checked out, you immediately see that your dentist isn’t as quick to pinpoint the offending tooth as you expected him to be. As it turns out, tooth pain can come from either an infection of the tooth or of the gums, or even an infection that has spread to both. Pinpointing the actual case is crucial in saving the affected tooth. Proper diagnosis is key to determining whether your pain is rooted from an infection in the gums, a cavity or a root issue.

Can Gingivitis Cause Tooth Pain?

Yes, tooth pain can begin when plaque, a film of bacteria, builds up along the gum line and causes the gums to become infected and inflamed; this inflammation is called gingivitis.

Gingivitis can cause the gum tissue to detach from the tooth surface. This creates pockets through which the infection can travel to the end of a tooth and into the tissues of its dental pulp (the sensitive tissue found inside the root canal).

Does a Decayed Tooth Lead to Infected Gums?

It could happen the other way around, too — damage to the tooth can cause gum disease. Bacteria find their way to the dental pulp inside the tooth, causing infection and pain that can range from dull to sharp, intermittent to constant, or localized to spread out to more than one area.

The tooth decay will have started a gum problem when the infection comes out of the tooth root and into the periodontal ligament. The problem may come in the form of a gum abscess or a periodontal pocket.

Getting the Right Help

It would be best practice for a general dentist to refer you to the right specialist — a periodontist who focuses on diseases of the structures that support teeth, or an endodontist who specializes in performing root canal procedures — in order to correctly zoom in on the problem area and take proper action.

Determining the nature of your tooth or gum pain is crucial because it would translate to specific outlooks. If the problem stems primarily from the tooth rather than the gums, root canal treatment may be all it takes to achieve good long-term results. If the problem is caused by gum disease, however, it’s possible that there may be too much bone loss and saving the tooth may no longer be done.

Schedule an appointment with your Laurel dentist to examine your mouth at the first sign of pain so that the appropriate treatment measures can be employed immediately.