If you are wondering: “Do I need to see a periodontist?” The answer is: Visiting your periodontist is always a good idea. A good periodontist will help you take care of your gums, prevent any issues before they occur, and diagnose/treat any problems that you may be experiencing with your gums.
However, if you are noticing some changes in your gums, this may be a sign you need to visit a periodontist as soon as possible. Here, we will explain to you the 5 most important signs to look out for.
What is the difference between a general dentist and a periodontist?
The first thing that you need to know is that periodontists are also dentists. Both general dentists and periodontists are trained in the same way, but they specialize in different areas.
Periodontists have specialized training in the field of periodontics to properly diagnose and treat certain types of conditions that affect the gums, like periodontitis and gingivitis.
At Atlanta Center for Advanced Periodontics, our specialists are highly experienced in performing a wide variety of gum treatments, from deep cleanings to osseous surgery. If you are looking for a skilled and compassionate periodontist in Midtown Atlanta or Roswell, contact us today!
What is gum disease and why should you care about it?
Gum disease is a bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the gums. It’s caused by plaque — a sticky film made of bacteria that forms on your teeth. Plaque can be removed through proper brushing and flossing, but if it’s not removed, it builds up and affects your gums.
If you have gum disease and don’t get proper treatment on time, it will eventually progress into periodontitis, which can lead to tooth and bone loss.
5 warning signs of gum disease you need to look out for:
Sign #1: Swollen, inflamed, or sore gums
If your gums are swollen and/or bleeding, it may be a sign of gingivitis. Gingivitis is an early stage of gum disease that often causes inflammation of the gums. When left untreated, this can cause deep pockets around your teeth, which harbor bacteria and can lead to a more advanced diagnosis of periodontitis.
If you notice swollen and tender gums that bleed easily when you brush or floss, it’s time to see your periodontist!
Sign #2: Gum recession
If your teeth are looking longer, it could be because your gums are receding. Gum recession, or loss of gum tissue, is another sign of periodontal disease.
Gum disease is characterized by the gradual destruction of the gum and bone that support your teeth. As this progresses, the gums pull away from the teeth.
If left untreated, a receding gum line will expose the roots of your teeth, leaving them vulnerable to infection, tooth sensitivity, and tooth loss.
Sign #3: Bad breath
We’ve all had bad breath from time to time, but persistent bad breath (halitosis) could be an indicator of gum disease. If you have chronic bad breath that doesn’t go away with good oral hygiene, you could have a periodontal infection.
Sign #4: Sensitive teeth
If gum disease is not properly treated and diagnosed, recession eventually exposes the roots of your teeth and produces irritation to the nerves, causing severe tooth sensitivity.
Sign #5: Loose or shifting teeth
Periodontitis can deepen the pockets around your teeth and cause them to shift. In later stages of the disease, symptoms include difficulty chewing, swallowing, and changes in your bite. If you notice your teeth are shifting, seek professional help as soon as possible.
If you experience any of these symptoms, see your periodontist right away
You’ll want to get an early start on treatment. The sooner you get started, the better chance you’ll have of saving your teeth, gums, and jaw bone from permanent damage.
Visiting your periodontist regularly will ensure that your gums stay healthy. Also, keeping up with good oral hygiene care, like brushing thoroughly 2-3 times a day and flossing once a day, will prevent any dental and periodontal problems from developing, so you can maintain a healthy smile for many years.
Are you worried about your gums?
The easiest way to check for signs of gum disease is by examining your gums daily when brushing and flossing. Look for red and swollen areas, as well as tenderness or bleeding around the gums. If there’s anything that worries you about your dental health, our team is here for you. Reach out to us today!