What is Periodontal Disease?

What is Periodontal Disease?

On May 10th, 2014, posted in: Dental Education for Patients by
  • -Periodontal disease is the loss of bone and support structure around teeth. It is a serious, chronic disease process that is more than just gingivitis.
  • -“Perio” means “around” and “dontal” refers to teeth.  So periodontal disease is disease around the teeth.
  • -Periodontal disease is caused by chronically having bacteria around your teeth.  These bacteria cause minor infections in the bone.  Wherever your gums bleed, this is a site of infection.  With the infection in your mouth, and the chronic inflammation, your bone can eventually diminish.
  • -Bone will not grow back around teeth.  If the disease process continues, the teeth become loose and can eventually fall out.
  • -Calculus (“tartar”) is plaque that has hardened around teeth and sometimes under the gums. It cannot be removed without a professional cleaning.  Tartar provides a shelter for bacteria to attack bone, and is therefore part of what needs to be removed with a deep cleaning.
  • -Teeth can become abscessed due to periodontal disease.
  • -More teeth are lost because the support structure around them is damaged than because of decay.
  • -Periodontal disease is a major source of bad breath.
  • -At Mint Dental, we treat periodontal disease very aggressively to improve our patients’ smiles and to benefit their overall health and well-being.   We carefully monitor the bone level and disease level of all of our patients, and we deeply clean patients that require more advanced treatment.
  • -It is important to remember that like all other areas of health care, treating periodontal disease is a partnership between the health care personnel and the patient.  The patient has to be willing to make a lifestyle change to stop the disease process, and the dental hygienist has to be able to monitor the patient and clean their teeth regularly through frequent appointments.