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BLEEDING GUMS? HOW A DENTIST IN OAK HILL CAN HELP

Posted by Jack Fan Jan 26, 2019

When you clean your teeth in the morning or at night, do you ever notice blood ending up in the sink along with the excess toothpaste? Bleeding gums is often a sign of gum disease, which according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) affects roughly half of all American adults – that is over 60 million men and women! Fortunately, gum disease can be reversed – but only if it is caught and treated in the early stages. Here are the signs and stages of gum disease and how visiting a dentist in Oak Hill can help prevent tooth loss.

WHAT IS GUM DISEASE?

Gum disease is an infection of the tissues in the mouth and can lead to tooth loss if left untreated. Also known as periodontal disease, it is caused by the bacteria in plaque, which can build up on teeth over time and eventually harden. Some common symptoms of gum disease include:

  • Bleeding gums, especially when brushing or flossing
  • Red, tender, or swollen gums
  • Receding gums
  • Persistent bad breath, even after brushing
  • Changes in the way teeth fit together when one bites

THE 3 STAGES OF GUM DISEASE

Gum disease typically progresses through the following three stages:

  • Stage 1: Gingivitis – The first stage of gum disease is characterized by red and swollen gums that bleed easily when brushing and flossing. Persistent bad breath is also an early warning sign. Gingivitis is the most common stage of gum disease, but fortunately is it reversible with improved oral hygiene and extra visits to the dentist.
  • Stage 2: Periodontitis – Teeth can loosen during this stage, contributing to bite problems. In addition, pockets may form below the gumline that trap tiny food particles. Swift treatment is needed at this stage, as irreversible damage to the bones that support your teeth can occur.
  • Stage 3: Advanced Periodontitis – Individuals with advanced periodontitis typically experience severe gum recession, loose teeth, chronic bad breath and swollen and bleeding gums. Actual bone loss occurs at this stage and tooth extraction may be recommended to halt further infection.

HOW A DENTIST CAN HELP

Regular dental checkups and cleanings are key components of gum disease prevention. During every visit to the dentist, he or she will examine the health of your gums by measuring gumline recession and gauging the depth of your gum pockets. As noted above, gingivitis can be reversed with better oral care at home and a professional dental cleaning.

Moreover, sitting in the dentist’s chair is the perfect opportunity to ask your dentist questions about how to improve your at-home oral hygiene routine to help prevent gum disease.

A healthy smile is impossible without healthy gums. If you notice your breath persistently stinks or your gums often bleed when brushing, talk with a dentist in Oak Hill today.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

An active member of the Texas Dental Association, Dr. Jack Fan enjoys helping patients achieve and maintain healthy smiles. Dr. Fan and his expert staff understand that healthy gums are an important part of overall wellbeing, which is why gum disease therapy is provided at The Dental Centre. Patients exhibiting any of the symptoms described above can contact Dr. Fan via his website or by calling the office at 512-361-4288.

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