Spot early signs of gum disease and find treatment in Aliso Viejo, CA
Bleeding gums is a sign of gum disease, and if you put off treatment, it can have severe consequences for your oral health. Dr. Cho screens patients in Aliso Viejo, CA, for early signs of gum disease during routine dental visits, to preserve your teeth and keep your smile bright.
Bacterial infections in your mouth
Gum disease is caused by bacteria that feed on sugars and starches in your mouth. When they eat, they create acids that break down your tooth enamel. They also release toxins that cause inflammation and irritation in your gums.
Over time, this infection can destroy your gum tissues and your underlying jawbone, and the bacteria can make their way into your bloodstream and reach your heart or brain. The toxins from oral bacteria have been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, aspiration pneumonia, and rheumatoid arthritis, and gum disease increases your risk of heart problems. Gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults, and without regular checkups, it can be easy to miss before the infection causes irreversible damage.
While poor oral hygiene is the main contributor to gum disease, there are other factors that can contribute to it, including:
- Tobacco and alcohol use
- A diet high in sugar
- Dry mouth
- Inadequate nutrition or hydration
- Certain medications
- Immunocompromised patients
Recognizing signs of gum disease
At the early stage of gum disease, known as gingivitis, it can be easy to miss the symptoms. As it progresses, the signs may become more noticeable, especially as your gum tissue becomes damaged. If you have any of these symptoms, you need a dental exam as soon as possible.
- Red or purple gums
- Swollen or tender gums
- Loose or shifting teeth
- Bad breath
- Your teeth appear longer
Treatment and prevention
Tartar buildup protects the bacteria in your mouth from your toothbrush, and Dr. Cho will need to do a deep cleaning to balance out your oral bacteria. She will perform scaling and root planing to remove tartar and plaque from your teeth and clean the pockets under your gum line from debris. This can be a time-consuming process, and it may take a couple of visits to get your tartar under control.
In advanced cases, Dr. Cho may recommend LANAP or laser-assisted new attachment procedure. She will use a dental laser to remove tartar and bacteria and treat diseased gum tissue. When damaged gums are stimulated with the laser, it will encourage new growth and help your gums form a stronger attachment to your teeth. You will also need to come in for periodontal maintenance a few times a year to keep damaged gums healthy.
Maintaining good hygiene is key to preventing gum disease. That means brushing your teeth at least twice a day, and daily flossing. You also need to visit the dentist for a professional cleaning at least twice a year or more, depending on your dentist’s recommendation. Changes to your diet and lifestyle can make play a big role as well. Dr. Cho will educate you one the best ways to keep your teeth healthy and your smile bright for years to come. Contact our office today at (949) 541-2529 to schedule an appointment, and learn more about gum disease treatment in Aliso Viejo, CA.