When you stick to a consistent schedule of preventive dental health visits, your dentist can usually spot signs of trouble early, including periodontal (gum) disease. However, you don’t always need to wait until your dental visit to know that you might be experiencing the early stages of gum disease. For patients in the Encinitas/San Diego community, knowing what signs to look for and what to do when they spot them can be an important tool in successfully preventing or treating gum disease.
Your gums bleed when you brush and floss
Slight bleeding is one of the most common telltale signs of gum disease. When you brush and floss your teeth and gums, you may notice small spots of blood mixed with your saliva and toothpaste. Many patients ignore this, believing that it’s harmless or that they’re just brushing too harshly. However, the bleeding is more often a sign that the gums have become infected with harmful oral bacteria.
Areas of your gums are changing color
Another common sign of gum disease is the changing color of certain areas of your gum tissues. As gum disease progresses, it erodes and destroys your gum tissues, causing the most affected areas to change drastically in appearance. That includes dark, discolored areas where the disease is most prominent. You might also notice your gums becoming red, glossy, angry-looking, and increasingly inflamed.
Too much space between your gums and teeth
Because periodontal disease affects your gums, it causes the tissues to gradually separate from the teeth roots that they’re supposed to protect. The spaces between them, known as periodontal pockets, increase in depth, which your periodontist can measure to determine if your gums are diseased. You might also notice signs of gum recession if you pay close attention to your gums and take note of any changes in their appearance from day to day.
Don’t Ignore the Warning Signs of Gum Disease
If your gums seem like they might be in trouble, then they probably are and you should visit your periodontist as soon as possible. For more information, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kania by calling her periodontal office in Encinitas/San Diego, CA, at (760) 642-0711.