What’s the Biggest Cause of Gum Disease?

There are many different things that could potentially raise your risks of developing gum (periodontal) disease. For example, if you smoke or chew tobacco, or simply don’t pay enough attention to your daily hygiene routine, then you’re more likely to experience gum disease at some point in your life. However, despite the many different risk factors, there is a definitive reason why people develop gum disease – because of excessive oral bacteria buildup on their gums. At our Encinitas/San Diego periodontal office, our goal is to help all patients safely guard their smiles against gum disease, which includes knowing as much as possible about what causes it.

The Notorious P. Gingivalis

Several different hundreds of types of bacteria inhabit your mouth and contribute to the formation of plaque (which eventually calcifies into tartar). Of them, the type, Porphyromonas gingivalis is one of the biggest factors in gum disease development. That’s because P. gingivalis bacteria produce molecules that cause excessive inflammation in your gums, exacerbating the formation and progression of your gum disease.

More than Just Gum Disease

The rampant inflammation that P. gingivalis bacteria cause is a major risk factor in the destruction that gum diseases, as well. As it gets worse, gum disease results in the erosion of your gum tissues and jawbone structure that support your teeth. The presence of unchecked inflammation can also increase your risks of other conditions that involve inflammation, including cardiovascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, dementia, and much more.

How to Address the Cause

While knowing the cause of gum disease reveals how concerning the condition can be, it also highlights how simple it can be to prevent it. By controlling the buildup of P. gingivalis and other oral bacteria, you can control their influence on your oral and periodontal health. Keeping a steady schedule of checkups and cleanings also helps you control this buildup, as well as spot signs of gingivitis (early gum disease) and treat it as soon as possible.

Learn more about the causes of gum disease

When you understand the main causes of gum disease, you can more successfully prevent it from developing and threatening your oral and overall health. For more information, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kania by calling her periodontal office in Encinitas/San Diego, CA, at (760) 642-0711.