Gum and periodontal diseases

The largest percentage of the loss of teeth is caused by periodontal diseases. Different types of the disease are distinguished: gingivitis and the more advanced form: periodontitis.  Both groups of the disease are caused by bacteria. Human mouth is full of bacteria which form a sticky, invisible layer on teeth ˮbacterial plaqueˮ. If the plaque is not controled by brushing and flossing, it develops into tartar, which can be removed only with professional cleaning /dentist or dental hygienist/.

Gingivitis is the inflammation of the gum. It appears in different forms: it can be localized or generalized, accute or chronic. Its first symptom is the redish discolouration, spongy and bleeding gum.

Periodontitis is the advanced form of gingivitis. The adhesion of gum to the tooth is destroyed by the inflammation caused by bacteria opening the root to the periodontal membrane and bone around the tooth. It can be symptom free for a long time and the first sign of the disease will be the movability of the tooth as a result of the destruction of tissues holding teeth in place.

There is an aggressive form of the periodontitis, which occures in young age. The fast loss of bone is typical which can be stopped only by a difficult and complex treatment. Genetic susceptibility can be followed through generations and on twins.  In this form of the disease a special type of bacteria can be found.

Proper and regular brushing and flossing can prevent the accumulation and ageing of bacterial plaque on the teeth. It is advisable to have a professional check up and cleaning regularly.

If tartar occures on teeth, the only way to prevent the more serious forms of disease is the professional cleaning. If the genetic susceptibility is likely in your family it is advisable  to turn to a specialist in young age.

In advanced forms of the disease, besides conservative treatments surgical treatments (bone and connective tissue grafts) are necessary. These treatments are complex ones.