Periodontal disease is a chronic disease involving bacterial infection of the gums and bone that support the teeth and can lead to tooth loss. It can affect one tooth or all the teeth.
Periodontal disease begins when the bacteria present in dental plaque cause the gums to become inflamed. This is called gingivitis and is the most mild form of the disease. Gingivitis is most commonly due to inadequate oral hygiene. Most cases involve little to no discomfort, but some bleeding when brushing may be noted. This stage of the disease is reversible with good oral hygiene and professional treatment.
If left untreated, gingivitis can progress into Periodontitis. The plaque and bacteria spread underneath the gum line and start to affect the deeper structures of the gums and bone. Toxins produced by the bacteria cause a chronic inflammatory response. This actually causes the body to in a way start to attack itself, leading to break down of the gum tissues and bone that support the teeth. Spaces (pockets) then form between the gums and the teeth where bacteria can build up and cause infections. As the disease progresses, these pockets deepen and more of the gum tissue and bone are destroyed.
Periodontal disease is associated with mild symptoms until it reaches the advanced stages.
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MCH Medical Center
8720 N Kendall Dr Suite 103
Miami, FL 33176
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