Posted in gum disease, oral health

4 Risk Factors of Gum Disease

Have you ever had something caught in your teeth for days? It’s likely because it was lodged deep between a tooth and your gums. That gum tissue is what keeps our chompers in place. There are three stages of gum disease. They’re all are treatable and it starts with an infection of bacteria under the gum line.

gingivitis_2The mild form of gum disease is Gingivitis. This is where plaque and other byproducts irritate the gums. It makes them swollen, tender, and more likely to bleed. Periodontitis is stage two. The gum tissue starts deteriorating as it detaches from the teeth forming pockets around the roots. These pockets can have a depth up to 7 millimeters. Finally, Advanced Periodontitis can set in. Tooth pockets get deeper as the severe gum recession leads to bone loss impacting your total well-being. Depending on how quickly and destructive your case is determines if surgical or non-surgical treatment is the best option for you.

Common Risk Factors of Periodontal Disease

  • Genetics – it’s hereditary and some of us are just unlucky! While you may be more susceptible to periodontitis, having a good oral hygiene routine with regular dental visits can help your smile stay healthy. Talk to us about finding the right balance for your needs.
  • Health – underlying medical conditions like diabetes and Crohn’s disease, as well as lowered immunity from illnesses and treatments often affect gum tissue. Medications, hormonal changes and obesity are also culprits and should be discussed.
  • Bad Habits – chewing on ice, not brushing or flossing daily and using tobacco are the most common behavior changes we encourage you to ditch. However, substance abuse and a diet lacking in vitamin C will also impact your smile.
  • Stress – it’s inevitable. But keep an eye on exactly how much it’s weighing you down. High levels or chronic stress can lead to poor hygiene habits. Anxiety can also lower your immune system from effectively fighting off bacteria that causes gingivitis (stage 1).

When to Seek Help

Common red flags of gum disease include:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Swollen or tender gums
  • Gums look bright red
  • Teeth wiggle

There’s no home remedy to cure gum disease. If not stopped quickly, serious damage to your gum and supporting bone will require much more aggressive treatment to save your teeth. Only professional treatment can help, so call today for a consultation (952) 920-9209.

Dr. Thomas Hoover, Dr. Neil Covin, and Dr. Satya Molleti
3401 Wooddale Avenue South
St. Louis Park, MN 55416
Phone: (952) 920-9209

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Author:

Dr. Hoover received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Chemistry from the Metropolitan State University of Denver in 1998. He received his Doctorate of Dental Surgery from the University of Minnesota in 2002. Upon graduation he served it the United States Navy as a dental officer. His time in the military included an Advanced Education in General Dentistry residency and two years as the solo dental officer on board USS Oak Hill (LSD-51). In 2005, he returned to the University of Minnesota to complete a three year Advanced Education in Periodontology. He graduated with honors in 2008 and earned a Certificate in Periodontology. Dr. Hoover is a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology. Voted a Top Dentist for 2007 in the Minneapolis, St. Paul Magazine, Dr. Covin has enjoyed practicing periodontology in St. Louis Park since 1973. He began placing dental implants in 1986, one of the first in the area. A graduate of the University of Minnesota Dental School, Dr. Covin went on to receive his advanced degree and masters in periodontology at the University of Iowa in 1971. Dr. Covin highly values continuing education and has advanced his dental knowledge with specialized courses in dental implant placement, bone grafting procedures, cosmetic periodontal surgery and piezosurgery. He is the Director of the West Suburban Study Club, a respected group of dental professionals that meet to discuss current treatment and technology. He is also a member of the American Dental Association, the American Academy of Periodontology and the Minnesota Dental Association. Dr. Molleti received her Certificate of Periodontics and Masters Degree in Dentistry from the University of Minnesota in 2002. She is an Adjunct Faculty at the Advance Education Program in Graduate Periodontology, University of Minnesota. She is a board certified periodontist from the American Board of Periodontology. She has been practicing periodontics and implant dentistry in the Minneapolis, St. Paul area for the past eleven years. Dr. Molleti is a Diplomate of the American Board of Periodontology and is an active member in the organization and the American Academy of Periodontology.

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