What is Periodontitis?

by | Jan 3, 2022 | Oral Health

Sometimes complicated dental terms can be difficult to understand. If your dentist has diagnosed you with periodontitis, you’re probably wondering, “What is periodontitis?” and “What can I do about it?” Here’s what you need to know about periodontitis.

Periodontitis Explained

Periodontitis is an inflammation of the gums, or the soft tissue around your teeth, that can lead to receding gums and loose teeth. Periodontitis is an advanced stage of gum disease, typically caused by a buildup of plaque and bacteria in the mouth over time.

How is Periodontitis Diagnosed?

Periodontitis needs to be diagnosed by a dental professional. If your dentist notices signs of periodontitis, they may recommend that you see a periodontist for a more in-depth diagnosis and treatment. Common signs of gum disease or periodontitis include persistent bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth, swollen or tender gums, bleeding when you brush or floss, painful chewing, loose teeth, increased dental sensitivity, and a receding gum line.

What Can You Do About Periodontitis?

Now that you know the answer to the question, “What is periodontitis?” you’re probably wanting to know what you can do about it. If you notice any possible signs of periodontitis, the first thing you should do is see your dentist right away for an exam.

You may have heard that periodontitis cannot be cured. But the good news is, it can be treated to slow its progression and minimize the effects. However, if you notice signs of gum disease and your dentist tells you that you are experiencing the earlier stages of gum disease, such as gingivitis, then periodontitis may also be prevented.

Depending on the stage of gum disease you are experiencing, your dentist may recommend a change in your at-home oral hygiene routine, more frequent professional cleanings, a deep cleaning, a course of antibiotics, or periodontal therapy.

When to See a Periodontist

If you want to know more information about questions such as “What is periodontitis?” and how it can be treated, it’s a good idea to see a dentist who specializes in periodontics. A periodontal dentist has dedicated their training, research, and practice to the recognizing and treating of periodontal conditions, so you’ll be sure to be in expert hands.

Call our Bethlehem, PA, dental office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.