Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, often goes undiagnosed because the initial symptoms aren’t always alarming or painful. However, like most other dental issues, the longer gum disease goes untreated, the worse the outcome might be. There’s even the risk that you could suffer bone loss or the loss of your teeth.
Symptoms of Gum Disease
Below is a list of symptoms usually associated with gum disease:
- Red or swollen gum tissue – If you allow plaque to build up on the gums, your swollen gums can become chronic. The constant exposure to bacteria on the gums will make it more difficult for your body to fight the gum infection. Over time, this will break down the gum’s attachment to your teeth, causing gum recession.
- Gum sensitivity – The gum inflammation mentioned above can cause gum recession. Once the gums recede, the nerves in your teeth will be exposed, causing extreme tooth sensitivity, especially to hot and cold temperatures or sugary treats.
- Chronic bad breath – The plaque that accumulates along the gum line has a distinct odor, and it’s not an especially pleasant one. Brushing alone won’t be enough to remove this plaque; it can only be removed during a professional dental cleaning.
- Bleeding gums – Healthy gums won’t bleed during normal brushing habits. Gums that bleed easily can be a sign of the plaque buildup that leads to periodontitis.
- Painful gum tissue or loosening teeth – These last two symptoms are signs that the disease has become more advanced. You need to seek immediate help from your dentist.
Any of these symptoms, in any combination, will require a checkup from your dentist to check on the severity of your gum disease. Gum disease can be easy to treat as long as it’s caught quickly enough, so the sooner the better.
If you have any of the above symptoms, or if you need to schedule an appointment, please contact our Boulder, CO dentist.