Red, puffy gums, or gums that bleed easily when you brush your teeth could be signs of the early stages of gingivitis — the precursor to a more serious gum disease called periodontitis. How do you know when to seek treatment? Here at Madison Square Dentistry, in the Flatiron District of New York City, Lawrence Wang, DDS, is a skilled general dentist who specializes in treating the various stages of gum disease.
It’s Dr. Wang’s top priority to help his patients have the healthiest teeth and gums through good oral hygiene habits, routine dental checkups, and state-of-the-art treatments. If you’re suffering from gum disease and think you might need professional treatment, here are some important signs to look for that may indicate a serious dental problem.
Swollen, red, puffy gums
Healthy gums are usually firm and pale pink, and they fit snugly around your teeth. When you have an infection in your gums from the buildup of plaque and bacteria, it causes inflammation. Swollen gums are often one of the first signs that an infection is present.
Your gums may appear red or purplish in color, depending on the extent of the infection. If left untreated, gum disease can progress from gingivitis to periodontitis, which leads to receding gums, tooth loss, and eventually bone loss in your jaw. If you have swollen gums, it’s important not to ignore them.
Bad breath happens to everyone on occasion, but when your halitosis doesn’t go away, it could be a sign of gum disease. Your gums may feel tender to the touch, and you may also have a bad taste in your mouth, along with bad breath that won’t go away, no matter how many breath mints you eat. Halitosis is a sign that you need to make an appointment with Dr. Wang to find out if gum disease is the culprit.
Painful chewing and tooth sensitivity
Other signs that you may be suffering from gum disease include pain when you chew and teeth that are sensitive to hot and cold foods and beverages. Painful chewing, along with red, puffy gums, is typically a sign of gum disease. In its early stages, gum disease is highly treatable and damage is often reversible.
Loose teeth or teeth that have shifted
If you notice your teeth are in a slightly different position, or you can feel a change in how your bite fits together when you chew, it could be a sign of gum disease. As your gums recede from your teeth, they no longer anchor teeth securely in place. Teeth can shift, become loose, and feel different than your normal bite.
To prevent permanent tooth loss, seek dental treatment as soon as possible, as these symptoms may be a sign of the progression of the disease.
Sores and pus along your gum line
In the more advanced stages of gum disease — periodontitis — you may experience sores inside your mouth and pus between your teeth. This is a sign that the disease is progressing and you should seek professional dental treatment. Remember, gum disease is largely preventable, but as it advances from gingivitis to periodontitis, treatment becomes more complicated and could lead to complex dental restorations.
Another concern if you have sores in your mouth or leave any type of gum disease untreated is that the infection in your mouth can become systemic. That means, it can affect your overall health and wellness, not just your oral health.
Face symptoms of gum disease without fear
At Madison Square Dentistry, Dr. Wang offers the latest technology and advanced gum treatments that minimize pain and discomfort. In fact, some periodontal disease treatments clear up the infection in your mouth without scalpels, sutures, or painful cleaning procedures. Two of these treatments, which work well for mild to moderate or advanced gum disease, use either lasers to remove bacteria and infection or powerful antibacterial solutions that disinfect gum tissue.
With both of these gum disease treatments, you won’t have to worry about painful dental procedures to help your teeth and gums return to optimal health.
If you have any of these common signs of gum disease, face your symptoms without fear. Call our caring, compassionate dental team today to schedule an appointment, or book online. When it comes to gum disease, the sooner you take action, the better.