When Should I Be Worried About Gum Disease?

You’ve enjoyed relatively solid oral health and always take time to brush and floss your teeth. You’re pretty free and clear then when it comes to gum disease, right? Unfortunately, a number of risk factors can leave even healthy smiles susceptible to the onset of the disease. When should you be worried about gum disease? What steps do you need to take beyond ordinary dental habits to protect your gums?

Possible Risk Factors

If you have a family history of developing the disease, you could be at risk. Other factors include high levels of stress, poor nutrition and oral hygiene, and fluctuations in your hormonal levels. Diseases that compromise your immune system, as well as diabetes and certain medications can also impact your risk. Finally, smoking and tobacco use can impact your risk and make the advanced stage of the disease, known as periodontitis, more likely to develop. Without treatment, periodontitis can lead to adult tooth loss.

Common Warning Signs

How do you know if you should seek help? First, healthy gums are pink and don’t bleed easily when you brush and floss. If you notice bleeding, soreness, or redness, or if the gums appear to be receding, you should see a professional. Otherwise, your inflamed gums could allow the disease to form and put your entire smile at risk.

Should I See My Periodontist?

If any of the symptoms above sound familiar, or if the risk factors we discussed apply to you, we suggest seeing your periodontist. The doctor will examine your gum tissue to see if you need treatment, preventive or otherwise. She can then create a customize treatment plan to help protect your smile.


As a board-certified periodontist, Dr. Ann M. Kania is specially qualified to diagnose and treat issues concerning periodontal tissue and the supportive structures of a patient’s smile, as well as place dental implants to restore teeth lost to dental disease or trauma. Dr. Kania also offers the Pinhole® Surgical Technique (PST) for minimally-invasive, scalpel-free gum grafting. To seek Dr. Kania’s expertise, contact her office today at (760) 642-0711.