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What is Gum Disease?

Gum disease affects approximately half of the UK population to varying degrees, often brought about by poor dental hygiene and skimping on the cleaning regime! Recent research suggested that those suffering with long term gum disease can be more likely to suffer with dementia later in life. Fortunately there is much that can be done to keep gum disease at bay, ensuring you dental health is one less worry for the future.

Common gum disease general falls into two categories:

Gingivitis

Gingivitis is characterised by swollen, red gums that are tender and can bleed during brushing or flossing. Often bad breath can emerge as a result of this gum irritation. Plaque is the main culprit in gingivitis, if left un-brushed plaque remains on teeth and can work its way under the gums where it will irritate.

Periodontitis

Periodontitis is the next step on from gingivitis, in which the inflammation spreads to the ligaments and bones that hold teeth in place. Pockets can form between teeth and gum as the gums pull away. These pockets are havens for plaque as they are near impossible to reach with a toothbrush. As the plaque continues to evade the toothbrush it will harden becoming tartar which will cause further irritation and potential infections. Often abscesses will form which can be extremely painful and distressing. In advanced periodontitis gums can shrink back from teeth exposing the roots and causing sensitivity, if the condition continuers you can even lose teeth due to bone degradation. Curing periodontitis is unfortunately not possible but following treatment, good dental hygiene will prevent resurgence of symptoms. Signs of periodontitis are: Red & bleeding gums | Painful gums | Pus from the gums | Teeth sensitivity | Swollen gums | Loose gums and teeth | Bad breath

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