Gum disease is an inflammation of the gum line that can progress to affect the bone that surrounds and supports your teeth. The three stages of gum disease — from least to most severe — are gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis.
Since it is common for gum disease to occur, especially as we age, many people are referred to a periodontist if gum disease is detected. During normal check-ups with a family dentist, periodontal disease will usually be noticed. If you notice these symptoms in between dental check-ups, you can usually see your dentist and ask for a referral to a periodontist.
Signs & Symptoms:
Gum disease can be painless, so it is important to be aware of any of the following symptoms:
- Gums that easily bleed when brushing or flossing
- Swollen, red or tender gums
- Gums that recede or move away from the tooth
- Persistent bad breath or bad taste in mouth
- Loose teeth
- A change in the way your teeth come together
- A change in the fit of partial dentures
- Visible pus surrounding the teeth and gums
- Sharp or dull pains when chewing foods
- Teeth that are overly sensitive to cold or hot temperatures