Gum disease / Oral health
The causes of gum disease
Gum disease is caused by a build up of plaque on the gums. Plaque is a thin film of bacteria which is continuously forming on your teeth and gums. It can removed by regular brushing and flossing. Some of the bacteria in plaque attacks the gums and can lead to gum disease.
Recognising gum disease
There are different forms of gum disease. Gingivitis causes inflammation of the gums around the teeth and can be very sore. It can also cause the gums to bleed, especially after brushing.
If gingivitis is left untreated, it can become periodontal disease. Periodontal disease attacks the tissue supporting the teeth, including the bone in the jaw. If periodontal disease is not treated, teeth will loosen and even fall out.
Most adults suffer from a certain degree of gum disease. However, as long as it is kept in check by regular brushing and visits to the dentist, it should not cause a great deal of discomfort. If you do notice bleeding from your gums then come in for a check-up.
If you are unlucky enough to suffer from periodontal disease, your dentist will recommend ways of caring for your gums and teeth and reducing damage to the tissue around the teeth.