The gum is part of the periodontium, which is the set of tissues responsible for supporting the teeth. This structure, especially the gums which are more exposed, is subject to diseases of varying severity (gingivitis and periodontitis). In severe cases, periodontal surgery may be required to stop the infection and preserve or rebuild the affected tissue. Your Ottawa dentist can perform these beneficial procedures.
The main periodontal diseases
- Gingivitis: this is a minor inflammation of the gums, at least in its early stages. It is caused by the action of bacteria that live in the mouth, particularly in the accumulation of plaque and tartar. Gingivitis can be seen in the mild redness and bleeding that occurs when brushing and flossing your teeth. Professional cleaning and a good hygiene routine are usually enough to stop it. However, if left untreated, it can get worse.
- Periodontitis: this is a more severe disease that often results from untreated gingivitis. At this point, the bacteria have penetrated under the gums, forming periodontal pockets (tissue detachments). They can then attack the other components of the periodontium and even the alveolar bone. This infection causes frequent redness, swelling and bleeding as well as chronic bad breath and, in some cases, fever.
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