Gingivitis Signs, Symptoms, & Treatments

Everything You Need to Know About Gingivitis

Gingivitis is one form of periodontal (gum) disease, one of the the most prevalent dental health issues facing American adults. It is estimated that about half of American adults suffer from some form of gum disease, though this problem is mostly preventable.

Our dentist in Fort Mill, SC is here to answer all of your questions about the causes, symptoms, and treatments available if you have gingivitis or another form of gum disease:

What are the causes and symptoms of gingivitis?

Your gums attach to your teeth at a lower point than what we see. This forms a small space called a sulcus, and if food and plaque get trapped in this space, gum infection or gingivitis can occur as a result. Left unchecked, gingivitis can cause many issues. The symptoms you start to see will include:

  • Bad breath that won’t go away
  • Gums that bleed when you brush or floss your teeth
  • Red, tender, or swollen gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Pain when chewing
  • Sensitive teeth

Can I cure gingivitis at home? Why do I need to see a dentist for gum disease?

Though certain over-the-counter products claim that they can treat a patient’s gingivitis at home, we always recommend seeking professional advice and care if you suspect gum disease. People have also tried rinsing with hydrogen peroxide and other home remedies, but these can be dangerous and even damage your tooth enamel.

Only a dentist can provide a deep cleaning and professional-grade antibiotics to help treat gum disease. A proper dental health routine that includes brushing, flossing, and rinsing along with a proper diet is a good place to start, but it shouldn’t be your only line of defense. Once gum disease reaches a certain point, it can no longer be reversed, so it’s important to see a dentist like Dr. Luck sooner rather than later.

What treatments are available to treat and cure gum disease?

At Luck Family, we will assess your teeth and gums during your appointment to determine what level of care your case of periodontal disease requires. Dr. Luck will come up with a treatment plan to diminish your symptoms and get your dental health back on the right track. Treatments include:

  • Scaling and root planing (deep cleaning) – This treatment uses special dental tools to scrape plaque and tartar away from the teeth, and is often enough to resolve minor cases of gingivitis.
  • Periodontal pocket reduction – As periodontal disease progresses, small “pockets” form under your teeth and bacteria collects in these areas and attack your gums. To prevent this, periodontal pocket reduction surgery is performed. Your gums are folded back, cleaned, and then sutured back into place, preventing further infection.
  • Antibiotics and oral rinses – Oral antibiotics can be used to help treat gum disease. Oral rinses, such as Peridex, are also very useful in fighting against periodontal disease. After 6 months of use, Peridex reduces oral bacteria levels by up to 97%.

Do You Suspect Gingivitis? Schedule an Appointment!

If you think you may be showing signs and symptoms of gum disease, don’t hesitate to call us as soon as possible. Getting periodontal care immediately will ensure that your issue doesn’t progress into a more severe one, and will increase your odds of reversing the problem. Call us now at (803) 548-6370 to schedule your appointment.

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