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What Are Three Phases of Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is a gum infection that affects 50% of adults over the age of 30. It can affect women and men, eventually leading to tooth loss or an array of other health issues. These generally result from inadequate brushing and flossing, along with infrequent visits to the dentist. Periodontal disease is a progressive oral infection composed of three phases: gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. Treating gum disease as soon as possible can help stop the damage and maintain your oral health. At R. Asher Henegar, D.D.S., P.A., we offer consultations to learn more about periodontal disease and get treatment. To schedule an appointment, contact our Colorado Springs, CO office today.

What causes periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is a condition that causes inflamed, swollen, and bleeding gums. Harmful bacteria, plaque, and tartar buildup are the primary causes and one of the leading reasons for missing teeth among adults over age 35. If bacteria deposits are not removed, damage can begin to take over the gums and jawbone structure without proper daily brushing and flossing, along with regular visits to the dentist for professional cleanings. Other factors that increase a person’s risk of developing gum disease include:

  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Genetics
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Certain medications that can reduce the natural flow of saliva or cause dry mouth

Signs of periodontal disease

At R. Asher Henegar, D.D.S., P.A., Dr. Asher Henegar will officially diagnose and provide treatment options, even if you have developed advanced periodontal disease. If you are concerned about your oral health, read on to familiarize yourself with the three stages of this often-chronic gum disorder and recognize any symptoms to get treatment.

1. Gingivitis

Gingivitis is the only stage of periodontal disease that is reversible because it has not progressed into the jawbone. A few early indicators of gingivitis are visible signs of plaque and tartar buildup around the gumline, inflamed gums, bad breath, and bleeding after brushing and flossing. While most of these early signs are not painful, periodontal disease can be “silent” until the more advanced stages. Better overall hygiene and regular dental checkups and cleanings can treat and reverse gingivitis.

2. Early periodontitis

When gingivitis symptoms worsen, it begins to impact a person’s gum tissue and bone structure. Without treatment, gingivitis can advance into a more severe condition known as periodontitis. Healthy gums should be firm and pinkish, but as bacteria evolve and become more aggressive, simple oral hygiene will no longer cut it. Once a patient reaches stage two, the infection has spread to the bone, leading to gaps between the gumline and teeth, while other early signs worsen.

3. Advanced periodontal disease

Advanced periodontitis is the final stage of this oral disease when the infection deepens even further as the harmful bacteria continue to grow. In addition to bone loss, advanced periodontal disease causes red, inflamed gums that ooze pus, pain when chewing, cold sensitivity, and severe halitosis. This stage requires periodontal therapy or surgery to clean the deep bacteria-filled pockets that have formed. If left untreated, gaps or gum recession can lead to tooth loss and other overall health problems.

Periodontal disease treatment near me, and preserving your smile

If left untreated, periodontal disease can progress to bone and tooth loss. At R. Asher Henegar, D.D.S., P.A., patients can get access to gum disease treatment and restore their oral health. Dr. Asher Henegar and his team provide a range of dental services and treatments to take care of any phase of periodontal disease. Dr. Henegar can diagnose, prevent, and treat this gum infection so you can enjoy your oral health and protect your smile. To learn more or schedule an appointment with Dr. Henegar, contact our office in Colorado Springs, CO.

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