Gum Disease Overview

What is Gum Disease?

Periodontal disease is the leading cause of tooth loss. Infection and inflammation, known as gingivitis, begin in the gums. Left untreated gingivitis, can become periodontitis, a disease which spreads to tissues that connect our teeth to bone.

Brushing and flossing your teeth helps to remove the bacterial film called plaque, but no one can remove all dental plaque and a buildup of this sticky bacteria can occur. Plaque which remains also changes over time, hardening on your teeth to form something called tartar, or calculous. These infected substances, the toxins they produce, and the inflammation your body produces as a response, can dissolve away your jawbone.

Research studies show a distinct link between periodontal disease and overall health. People who have poor periodontal health have increased inflammation in the body. This leads to higher risks for developing heart disease, diabetes and many kinds of cancer. Chronic inflammation is also linked to arthritis, bowel disease, autoimmune diseases and early Alzheimer’s Disease.

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