eriodontal disease, or gum disease, is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults. Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection affecting the gums and bone that support the teeth. Periodontal disease is often painless so it is important to know the signs or symptoms. Usually by the time pain is evident, the disease is moderate of even severe and tooth loss may be eminent. Finding the disease is the first step in preventing tooth loss. Prevention is easy with regular dental checkups and professional dental cleanings that should include a periodontal exam. Noticing any of the following? • Gums that bleed when you brush or floss • Red, swollen or tender gums • Gums that have pulled away from teeth • Chronic bad breath • Loose teeth
taking care of your teeth By Ryan M. Ross, D.D.S
If so, please see your dentist. Healthy gums are pink, firm and fit like a cuff around each tooth. When disease occurs, the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth and as the disease progresses tissue and bone that support the teeth are destroyed. Tooth loss is not the only problem with periodontal disease.
There are links between periodontal disease, heart disease and stroke. Periodontal disease is caused by plaque, which contains bacteria that produces toxins. These toxins irritate and inflame the gums, which pull away from the teeth to form pockets. Plaque can be reduced by brushing and
Living Lavishly Vol. 9 showcases the local resources, talent and expertise we have here in the Central Coast of California.