All about periodontal disease

"It's a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gums and bone supporting the teeth. Untreated, it can result in the loss of your teeth," say doctors from National Dental Centre Singapore​ (NDCS), a member of the SingHealth​ group.

What are the symptoms of periodontal disease?

Common symptoms include persistent swollen, red gums that bleed easily on brushing or eating hard foods. Bad breath and tooth sensitivity can also indicate underlying periodontal disease.

What causes this to happen?

The disease begins when bacterial toxins in plaque irritate and cause inflammation of the gums. The gums separate from the teeth, forming pockets that become infected. As the disease progresses, the pockets deepen and more gum tissue and bone are destroyed. Eventually, your teeth can become loose and may have to be extracted. People with poor oral hygiene and those who are smokers are at greater risk of getting the disease.

What must I do if I have bleeding gums?

Consult a dentist to determine the exact cause. The more serious type of periodontal disease requires more intensive treatment and regular dental checkups to make sure the problem is kept under control.

What will the dentist do?

The dentist will check the extent of the disease before deciding on the appropriate treatment. There is no reason to be afraid. Your dentist has the proper equipment to make you feel as comfortable as possible. The sooner you see your dentist about the problem, the better.

See your dentist if:

  1. Your gums bleed often.
  2. You have bad breath.
  3. Your teeth are sensitive.

Ref: V10