Have you noticed your gums starting to bleed while brushing your teeth? This is a symptom of gingivitis, the first and least harmful stage of gum disease. Seek gingivitis treatment in Houston at the first sign to avoid progressing to the more dangerous stages of gum disease.
Though it is the least harmful stage, it should not be taken lightly. If left untreated, gingivitis can develop into periodontal disease and eventually advanced periodontal disease. These two stages are considerably more difficult to deal with.
Main Symptoms of Gingivitis
Since the onset of gingivitis tends to be mild, the symptoms are often overlooked. The main symptoms to look out for are:
- Swollen gums
- Tender gums, which aren’t always present with gingivitis
- Bad breath, particularly bad breath that doesn’t go away with brushing and rinsing
- Gums changing color, usually to a milky red and white color rather than the normal pink
- Receding gums
- Bleeding gums, which are often the first noticed sign
When you first discover any of these symptoms, it’s time to schedule a visit with your Memorial dentist for gingivitis treatment in Houston. The sooner you visit, the sooner you’ll discover the source of the infection. Early detection means better treatment and reversal of symptoms.
Causes and Risk Factors of Gingivitis
The primary cause of gingivitis is the hardening of plaque around the gumline to form tartar. Tartar is a more defensive home for bacteria to thrive in. Once under the gumline, the bacteria feeds on the soft tissue, depositing more plaque, which hardens to form more tartar.
To prevent gingivitis, you must clear away plaque every 2-3 days. Of course, twice daily brushing and rinsing drastically reduces the chances of developing the disease.
There are several factors that could increase the risk of developing gingivitis. The top of the list is poor oral hygiene, but good hygiene will go a long way to stave off the effects, even against other risk factors.
Other risk factors include:
- Tobacco use
- Drug use, both prescription and narcotic
- Old age
- Poor diet
Gingivitis Treatment in Houston
Your Galleria dentist can readily diagnose gingivitis with a simple visual examination of the symptoms. If little or no signs are present, more thorough tests may be necessary.
To reverse the onset of gingivitis, your Houston dentist performs a thorough cleaning of the teeth and gums. The cleaning clears out any hardened tartar, which can be hard to clean out at home, and may also include re-materializing the teeth.
Being able to take care of your teeth at home is the first step to preventing gum disease, including both gingivitis and periodontal disease.