The initial stage of gum disease, known as “gingivitis,” is reversible with proper at-home oral hygiene and dental care. But if you don’t get treatment for gum disease in Sacramento early, your gum disease could progress, and cause irreversible damage to your gums and teeth. Once gum disease progresses past gingivitis, it’s not reversible.
That’s why early care is so important. So in this blog from New Essence Dentistry, we’ll take a look at the top 5 early signs of gum disease. If you recognize one or more of these signs, you should get help from Dr. Jeron Winslow right away.
Bleeding while brushing and flossing isn’t always caused by gum disease, but it can be a sign of gingivitis. If you bleed a lot when brushing and flossing, try being more gentle. Overbrushing and flossing too aggressively can cause bleeding.
Bleeding may also happen when you start flossing regularly for the first time, since the gums between your teeth are not used to the flossing process.
But if you continue to bleed and see pinkish saliva in the days and weeks after you adjust your brushing and flossing routine, this may indicate the presence of gum disease.
Gingivitis usually causes noticeable gum inflammation. This is a natural reaction to the presence of bacteria within your gums. Your body sends immune cells to fight the bacteria, and this causes inflammation.
Your gums should not be puffy, tender, or inflamed if they’re healthy. If you think your gums look puffier and bigger than usual or they are tender to the touch, you likely have gingivitis.
Along with gum tenderness and swelling, your gums may also look discolored. Healthy gums are usually light pink and consistent in color, though people of some ethnicities may have darker gums.
No matter the natural color of your gums, it will be fairly obvious if the color changes. Infected gums usually look dark and reddish. Any change in the color of your gums is cause for concern, and likely indicates gum disease or another serious oral health issue.
As bacteria begin to build up on your gums and between your gums and your teeth, they will start to make your breath stink. If you notice that your breath constantly smells bad, even after brushing your teeth, using mouthwash, and watching what you eat and drink, this could indicate the presence of gum disease.
Gum recession happens when bacteria buildup between your teeth and gums causes the gums to pull away from your teeth. You may notice that your teeth look longer than normal, or the area where your teeth and gums meet may feel more sensitive.
Gum recession is a sign that your gum disease has progressed past gingivitis, and has become irreversible. While it’s still treatable, it won’t be possible to completely eliminate the infection. Get help right away.
Gum disease is the #1 most common cause of premature tooth loss in America, and is particularly prevalent in older adults. So if you recognize any of these early signs of gum disease, get help right away.
If you get treatment before your condition progresses past gingivitis, it can be completely reversed. And, even if your gum disease is not reversible, early treatment halts its progression and preserves your teeth and your gums.
Need help? Schedule an appointment with Dr. Jeron Winslow at New Essence Dentistry to get expert periodontal care in Sacramento. Contact us online or give us a call at (916) 515-1000 to get started. We’re always here to help!