Signs and Symptoms Of Gingivitis
Prevention is better than a cure, right? When it comes to dental health, the expression has never been more accurate. Gingivitis is the most common and mild form of gum disease in the dental practice and is also the easiest of the conditions to prevent.
What Is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis is the consequence of bad habits related to the proper care of oral hygiene.
Healthy gums are firm and pale pink and fitted tightly around the teeth. When our teeth and gums are healthy, we feel more confident. However, when the contrary occurs, we feel all kinds of discomfort, even when we suffer only a mild form of Gingivitis. Gingivitis is the inflammation, redness, and swelling of the gums caused by bacteria. Gingivitis means inflammation of the gums or gingiva. It commonly occurs because a film of plaque, or bacteria, accumulates on the teeth.
Gingivitis is a non-destructive type of periodontal disease, but untreated gingivitis can progress to periodontitis. It is more severe and can eventually lead to loss of teeth.
What are the Symptoms of Gingivitis?
Signs of gingivitis include red and puffy gums that bleed easily when the person brushes their teeth. Gingivitis often resolves with good oral hygiene, such as longer and more frequent brushing and flossing. Also, an antiseptic mouthwash may help.
In mild cases of gingivitis, patients may not even know they have it, because symptoms are not readily perceptible. However, the condition should be taken seriously and addressed immediately.
There are two main categories of gingival diseases:
Dental plaque-induced gingival disease. It can be caused by plaque, systematic factors, medication or malnutrition. Non-plaque induced gingival lesions. It can be caused by a specific bacterium, virus, or fungus. Also, genetic factors could be present and systemic conditions. (including allergic reactions and certain illnesses), wounds or reactions to foreign bodies, such as dentures. Sometimes there is no specific cause.
The accumulation of bacterial plaque between and around the teeth triggers an immune response, which in turn, can eventually lead to the destruction of gingival or gum tissue complications, including the loss of teeth.
When this plaque is not removed adequately through brushing, it can harden into calculus or tartar, at the base of the teeth, near the gums. Plaque and tartar eventually irritate the gums, causing gum inflammation around the base of the teeth. It means that the gums might easily bleed. Tender gums that may be painful to the touch, halitosis or bad breath, receding and soft gums, are also an indication of gingivitis disease.
How to treat Gingivitis
A dentist or oral hygienist will check for symptoms, in the oral cavity. If diagnosis happens early, and if treatment is prompt and proper, gingivitis can be successfully reversed. Treatment involves care by a dental professional and follow-up procedures carried out by the patient at home. Following the dental health professional´s instruction can generally prevent complications.
However, without treatment, gum disease can spread and affect tissue, teeth, and bones.
Choosing a qualified up to date dental professional, with the right training and proper assistant is of the utmost importance.
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