Gum disease is an infection and inflammation of the gum tissues that is most often caused by hardened tartar at the gum line. Other factors like tobacco use and certain medical conditions can accelerate the diseases progress. Early symptoms usually include red or inflamed gums that bleed easily during brushing and flossing as well as issues with chronic bad breath.
This early stage known as gingivitis, can often be reversed through improved oral hygiene and regular dental cleanings at Niloufer G. Hamsayeh, DDS.
Without proper attention gingivitis can develop into a more serious form of gum disease known as periodontitis. When this happens your gums to recede from the base of your teeth, forming pockets of infection deep within the gum tissues. Eventually this can lead to a reduction of bone structure where your teeth are anchored in your jaw.
Long term systemic inflammation caused by periodontitis can also tax your immune system. Continuing research has found that this can related to other medical conditions including diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer. You should note that while periodontal disease does not cause these conditions, they do seem to have some level of impact or can limit your treatment options.
If you have questions or concerns about gum disease, please call Niloufer G. Hamsayeh, DDS at 415.682.6377 to schedule an appointment.