Gingivitis (“inflammation of the gum tissue”) is a term used to describe non-destructive periodontal disease. The most common form of gingivitis is in response to plaque adherent to tooth surfaces, termed plaque-induced gingivitis, and is the most common form of periodontal disease. In the absence of treatment, gingivitis may progress to periodontitis, which is a destructive form of periodontal disease.
The symptoms of gingivitis are somewhat non-specific and manifest in the gum tissue as the classic signs of inflammation:
- Swollen gums
- Bright red or purple gums
- Gums that are tender or painful to the touch
- Bleeding gums or bleeding after brushing
Gingivitis can be prevented through regular oral hygiene that includes daily brushing and flossing. Interdental brushes are also useful in cleaning the teeth from plaque. Hydrogen peroxide, saline, alcohol or chlorhexidine mouth washes may also be employed. In a recent clinical study, the beneficial effect of hydrogen peroxide on gingivitis has been highlighted.
Dr. Kaady will focus his treatment for gingivitis as removal of plaque. Therapy is aimed at the reduction of oral bacteria, and may take the form of regular periodic visits together with adequate oral hygiene home care. Thus, several of the methods used in the prevention of gingivitis can also be used for the treatment of manifest gingivitis, such as scaling, root planing, curettage, mouth washes containing chlorhexidine or hydrogen peroxide, and flossing. Interdental brushes also help remove any causative agents.
Recent scientific studies have also shown the beneficial effects of mouthwashes with essential oils.
In extreme cases, Periodontitis may occur. Periodontitis is a set of inflammatory diseases affecting the periodontium, i.e., the tissues that surround and support the teeth. Periodontitis involves progressive loss of the alveolar bone around the teeth, and if left untreated, can lead to the loosening and subsequent loss of teeth. Thus it is very important to have Dr. Kaady examine your overall dental health to prevent gum disease.