Periodontitis is a gum disease that is a complication derived from gingivitis. It literally means an inflammation around the tooth, and it is characterized as an infection that inflicts damage on the tissue, and bone supporting a tooth.
When Periodontitis Occurs
When a person has periodontitis, his/her gum tissue pulls away from the teeth, and this results in large pockets between the tooth and the gums. When debris gets into these spaces, plaque below the gum line will builds-up. Bacteria that live in the plaque produce toxins, which break-down the bone and tissue that holds the teeth in place.
Risk Factors of the Disease
Smokers have the highest risk factors when it comes to periodontitis. Also, females who undergo hormonal changes like puberty, pregnancy, and menopause are prone to this disease. Risks are also present in people who have diabetes, AIDS, and cancer.
There are also some people who are susceptible to gum diseases like periodontitis, due to their genetic makeup. Moreover, prescription drugs that reduce saliva can also put a person at risk for this gum disease.
Complications of Periodontitis
The most common complication one can get from periodontitis is tooth loss. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Acquiring respiratory problems, coronary artery disease, and even stroke are also risks for those who suffer from periodontitis.
If a pregnant woman has periodontitis, it may also lead to her baby having a low birth weight, or even being born prematurely.
For those who have diabetes, periodontitis will make it hard for them to control their blood sugar level.
The sooner you address your periodontitis, the less the damage will be. Periodontitis is a long-term disease, and that is why aside from proper oral hygiene, you are also recommended to visit your dentist regularly for checkups.
Most probably, your dentist in Burke, VA will recommend an initial treatment for removing the plaque and tartar build-up. Then, non-surgical cleaning below the gum line will also be done.
Medications will most likely be provided. Oral antibiotics, prescription microbial mouthwash, antiseptic chips, antibiotic microspheres, and enzyme suppressants are some of what your dentist might prescribe for you.
However, if your periodontitis has advanced, you might also undergo surgical procedures such as flap surgery, or bone and tissue grafts.
Keep in mind that the treatment that will be recommended by your dentist will rely entirely on how advanced the disease has become.
Periodontitis is actually preventable and basically, it is caused by poor dental hygiene. If you practice consistent and proper oral hygiene, as well as avoid smoking, then you lessen the risk of you acquiring the disease.