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Gum disease

Gum disease

Gum disease is an inflammatory disease that affects the gums and bones around the teeth and is the most common reason for tooth loss. It is estimated to impact more than half of adult in the UK. Gums become red, swollen and bleed in the presence of the bacteria in dental plaque. Many people have gum disease which has never been diagnosed or treated. What’s more, gum disease is linked to diabetes, heart disease and can affect mother and baby during pregnancy.

The symptoms of gum (periodontal) disease include:

  • Bleeding when brushing or flossing teeth or eating hard food such as an apple
  • Red, swollen or painful gums
  • Receding Gums
  • Loose or separating teeth
  • Persistent bad breath or taste

Whilst plaque is the main cause of gum disease, some people are more susceptible than others.

  • Family history – some people may be genetically susceptible to gum disease despite good oral hygiene.
  • Smoking – smoking poses one of the most significant risk factors in developing periodontal disease.
  • Stress – stress can make it harder for the body to fight off infection.
  • Age – Older people have the highest rates of periodontal disease.
  • Cardiovascular disease, diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis interfere with the body’s inflammatory system which in turn worsens the condition of the gums.

The most important thing to do is to attend regular check-ups with your dentist. We recommend all our patients to see our hygienist to help maintain meticulous plaque control and avoid developing gum disease. Patients are also encouraged to see our in-house oral health educators who can help refine your brushing technique to ensure you maintain optimum oral hygiene.


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