What is gum disease?

Gum disease (also called periodontal disease) is an infection of the tissues surrounding and supporting the teeth. It is a major cause of tooth loss in adults. Because gum disease is usually painless, however, you may not know you have it.

Gum disease is caused by plaque, we’ve all heard of plaque, but did you know it’s a sticky film of bacteria that constantly forms on the teeth? When the film hardens on the teeth it’s called plaque. These bacteria create toxins that can damage the gums. How to keep your teeth healthy.


In the early stage of gum disease, called gingivitis, the gums can become red, swollen and bleed easily. At this stage, the disease is still reversible and can usually be eliminated by daily brushing and flossing.

The plaque begins to spread down the roots of the teeth and the gums get infected which causes damage to the bone and fibres (periodontal ligament) which support the teeth. If unchecked, the disease can advance, the gums begin to pull away from the teeth, allowing more food and plaque to be trapped under them, causing more damage. General dentistry treatments.

In the very advanced stages of the disease the teeth become loose and shift around because of the widespread damage to the bone and ligaments holding the teeth in. Because of this your bite may shift and you may have difficulty chewing, your teeth may look “long” and if you wear a partial denture it may no longer fit. Missing a tooth? Get an implant.

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