Stages of Gum Disease

stages of gum disease - dentist in grand junction co

Stages of Gum Disease

Four Stages of Gum Disease

stages of gum disease - dentist in grand junction co

Did you know that over half of Americans have periodontal disease? It’s not unusual for patients to experience gum disease at one point in their life. Fortunately, gum disease is preventable. There are several stages of gum disease. In order from bad to worst, gum disease starts with gingivitis, mild periodontitis, moderate periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. Below, Dr. Josh Eastham, a dentist in Grand Junction, CO, explores the stages of gum disease. 

What is Gum Disease?

Periodontal disease, often known as gum disease, is an infection of the gums and periodontal tissues. If left untreated, the infection can destroy enough tissue and spread to the underlying bone.

This infection is typically caused by improper brushing and flossing routines. After all, there are around 700 strains and types of oral bacteria inside the mouth. Some of them are infections that contribute to plaque development.

The main cause of gum disease is dental plaque, which is a sticky, “yucky” film that accumulates on the surface of the teeth. If you don’t remove all of the plaque on your teeth, it can spread to the gums. Plaque that is not removed hardens into tartar, which can irritate and infect the gums.

Gum disease can also be caused by viruses, oral trauma, and other autoimmune illnesses. A lack of vitamin C raises the chance of getting periodontal disease.

Gum Disease Signs and Symptoms

The symptoms of periodontal disease usually vary depending on the stage or severity of the illness. For example, during the early stages of gingivitis, you may just have swollen gums or bleeding. This is especially apparent when you floss or clean your teeth.

If the condition is allowed to grow, it might cause more severe symptoms such as:

  • Bad breath
  • Gum recession
  • Plaque
  • Loose teeth
  • Foul taste

Note: If gum disease is left untreated, you will eventually lose your natural teeth. Are you experiencing the above symptoms of gum disease? Contact your dentist in Grand Junction, CO, for a consultation. Dr. Josh and the High Desert team will get your oral health back on track. 

Gum Disease’s Four Stages

As mentioned above, periodontal disease is classified into four stages. 

Gingivitis

Gingivitis is the easiest stage of gum disease to treat because it is still non-destructive. It exclusively affects the gingiva in the early stages. The gingiva is the gum tissue that surrounds the base of the upper and lower teeth.

Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gingiva. It creates swollen, sensitive, and aching gums at this phase. It might also cause the gums to bleed more easily. 

Mild Periodontitis 

Gum inflammation can occur in as little as five days during the early stages of gingivitis. The symptoms of widespread gingivitis become more visible after two to three weeks. If you continue to ignore this, it will progress to mild periodontal disease.

At this point, your gums will begin to peel away from your teeth or “recede.” As a result, small pockets will form between your teeth and the affected gums. More dangerous bacteria can subsequently infiltrate these “spaces,” resulting in even more bleeding. Our friend Dr. Chris Green, a dentist in Parker, CO, says that treating your gum disease is crucial at this point. In fact, if the gum disease progresses any further, you may experience permanent damage.

 

“Dr. Joshua was caring, made me feel comfortable, and was extremely thorough. I would recommend him. Both the dental assistants are good as well.” – Nancy W.

Moderate Periodontitis

During the third stage of gum disease, there will be more bleeding and gum recession, says Dr. Josh. Your teeth will lose support as more tissues die, and they will become moveable. The tooth infection can also cause a generalized inflammatory reaction. At this point, you should have already visited your dentist in Grand Junction for periodontics treatment

Advanced Periodontitis 

This is the most severe of the four phases of gum disease, inflicting the most damage to your gums and bones. The tissues that hold your teeth in place and connect them to the bone are already deteriorating. You’re likely to be in a lot of pain and have terrible breath. This stage out of the stages of gum disease is where you’ll most likely lose your teeth. 

Contact Dentist in Grand Junction

As you can see, gum disease is a serious dental problem. If you’re experiencing any signs of gum disease, contact High Desert Dental immediately. Our staff will do everything we can to restore your oral health. High Desert Dental also offers emergency dentistry services.

Fresh Breath Tips from Grand Junction Dentist

fresh breath tips from grand junction dentist

Fresh Breath Tips From
Grand Junction Dentist

Fresh Breath Tips

fresh breath tips from grand junction dentist

Fresh Breath Tips from a Grand Junction Dentist

There’s nothing like the feeling of fresh breath. Not only will it help you make a good first impression, but it also helps your smile stay bright and healthy. However, achieving fresh breath is not easy for some. Consider following these fresh breath tips from a Grand Junction dentist. For dental care in Grand Junction, CO, contact High Desert Dental. 

Mouthwash

This may seem like an obvious one, but just in case you didn’t know, mouthwash is super helpful in containing bad breath. Morning breath is caused by bacteria in your mouth. With mouthwash, the bacteria decreases. Thanks to its liquid form, the mouthwash can easily get into all the cracks and crevices of your mouth. 

Chlorhexidine is an active ingredient in many antibacterial mouthwashes. However, alcohol is used as an antimicrobial agent in some antibacterial rinses. Alcohol-based mouthwashes are often avoided because they can dry out the mouth’s tissues. The odors of your mouth can quickly resurface if you don’t have enough saliva to rinse away oral bacteria during the day. As a result, it’s usually best to use alcohol-free antibacterial rinses.

Simply add the mouthwash to the end of your morning and evening brushing and flossing routines to ensure daily use. Dr. Josh recommends using a mouthwash that is FDA approved.

Rinse With Water

If you’re a snacker or tend to eat more than six meals a day, we suggest rinsing with water. Most of us do not carry a spare toothbrush around, so if you can’t brush your teeth, rinse! This will help get any excess food that might be causing bad breath. This will also help improve oral health.

Chew Gum

A go-to for many people suffering from bad breath is gum. Chewing sugar-free gum will help freshen your breath in the meantime. Our favorite gums include cinnamon or xylitol. Why? Cinnamaldehydes, which are found in cinnamon, have antibacterial properties. Xylitol, a natural sweetener noted for its antibacterial properties, is often used to improve the flavor of sugarless gum. When you chew, xylitol gum can help reduce the amount of odor-causing bacteria in your mouth. Additionally, chewing gum will help with fresh breath, produce more saliva, and get rid of excess debris.

Quit Smoking

Those who suffer from bad breath and need help finding the source should reflect on their daily habits. Smoking is a habit that can be detrimental to your oral health. Tobacco contains nicotine, which can constrict your mouth’s blood vessels and reduce the amount of saliva generated. Our friend, Dr. Moghadam, a dentist in Easton, PA, explains that these side effects can trigger the bad breath that smokers are notorious for. Furthermore, when a person stops smoking, blood flow and saliva production should return to normal. 

Hydrate

Bad breath can also be triggered due to a lack of saliva. If your mouth doesn’t naturally produce enough saliva, consider drinking more water. This will help with providing more efficient saliva production, not to mention that your body needs water to function. Anyone dealing with oral health problems should drink more water.

Stick to Your Oral Hygiene

Poor oral hygiene will result in bad breath. To ensure that your mouth is happy and clean, brush at least twice a day for two minutes and floss daily. Plaque buildup will allow bacteria to flourish. Furthermore, it will lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and even tooth loss. Don’t put off your oral health any longer! 

Tongue Scraper

Oral bacteria that are anaerobic are commonly found on the tongue. Since these bacteria are major causes of bad breath, regularly scraping the tongue can be a key step in preventing bad breath. A tongue scraper extracts bacteria, their byproducts, and plaque as it glides over the surface of your tongue.

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“This dental office is great. Really make sure to accommodate your schedules and make your visit comfortable. Highly recommend!” – Tyra M.

Visit Your Dentist in Grand Junction

At High Desert Dental, we believe prevention is key. One of the best ways to prevent dental problems is seeing a professional. Your dentist in Grand Junction, CO, will be happy to help. It’s important to schedule a professional teeth cleaning and check-up every six months to ensure you’re right on track. Plaque and oral bacteria will develop otherwise. Additionally, tartar can only be removed during a professional cleaning. During your visit, let us know that you’re dealing with bad breath, and we will work with you to find a solution. Give us a call if you need pediatric dentistry in Grand Junction, CO.