Identifying Gum Disease in Different Stages

Periodontal disease is the most common reason why people lose teeth, and one of the biggest reasons why it advances so severely is because its earliest stages are commonly ignored. Before gum disease leads to tooth loss, it causes increasingly worse damage to your gum tissues, periodontal ligaments, and eventually, your jawbone structure. At our Encinitas/San Diego periodontal office, we offer a wide range of specialized treatments to help you control gum disease, regardless of what stage it’s in.

Gingivitis (early gum disease)

When gum disease first forms, its earliest stage is known as gingivitis. This describes an infection in your gum tissues caused by harmful oral bacteria that accumulate in the form of plaque. These bacteria can settle underneath your gum line, releasing toxins that cause the tissues to separate from your teeth roots. The pockets that form, known as periodontal pockets, allow more bacteria to settle under your gums and exacerbate the condition. Signs can include redness and slight swelling in your gums, as well as bleeding when you brush and floss your teeth.

Periodontal disease (moderate gum disease)

As gingivitis progresses, the redness and swelling in your gum tissues grows worse, as does the bleeding in your gums whenever placed under pressure. The worsening signs indicate more severe damage to your gum tissues, and in some cases, you may notice your teeth becoming loose due to the gum recession. You may also notice that your teeth appear longer as more of their root structures are exposed, which can also lead to increasingly worse tooth sensitivity. At this point, gum disease typically isn’t reversible, and seeking specialized treatment is necessary to prevent it from growing worse.

Periodontitis (severe gum disease)

Severe gum disease, or periodontitis, is the stage at which tooth loss becomes almost imminent. The destruction of gum tissues and periodontal ligaments extends to your jawbone, particularly the structure surrounding the sockets that support your teeth roots. As the disease erodes these structures, they lose their ability to properly support your teeth, and one or more of them may fall out by the time you seek treatment. In addition to stopping the disease’s progression and restoring the damage to your oral structures, your treatment may also include a lifelike replacement option for restoring your lost teeth.

Gain control over your periodontal health

The best way to address your gum disease depends on what stage it’s in, but with highly-personalized expert care, we can help you gain control over your periodontal health. For more information, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kania by calling her periodontal office in Encinitas/San Diego, CA, at (760) 642-0711.