Gum Disease

What is Gum Disease?

Gum Disease or Periodontitis is an inflammatory disease affecting the tissues which surround and support the teeth and if left untreated can lead to loosening and subsequent loss of teeth.

What are the symptoms and consequences of Gum Disease?

As the disease progresses, gums become red and bleed with brushing and teeth may become loose and consequently, they will need to be removed. The most recent national adult dental health survey found that 54% of adults aged over 16 had moderate signs of Periodontal Disease in one or more teeth. More severe periodontal disease was found in 5% of the population.
Which are the causes of Gum Disease?

The primary cause of gingival inflammation is poor oral hygiene which in susceptible patients can progress to periodontitis. Smoking and other factors can increase the risk of Periodontitis. The majority of patients with perio conditions can be treated simply with oral hygiene instruction and advice, and debridement (cleaning) with special instruments to remove plaque and tartar. This debridement is called Periodontal Treatment and can be carried out by the dentist.

Gum Disease Photo

Gum disease around the implants

Peri – implantitis

Peri-implantitis is a site-specific infectious disease that causes an inflammatory process in soft tissues, and bone loss around an osseointegrated implant in function. Two entities are described within the concept of peri-implant disease: peri-implant mucositis and peri-implantitis. Peri-implant mucositis is defined as a reversible inflammatory reaction in the soft tissues surrounding an implant. Peri-implantitis is an inflammatory reaction with loss of supporting bone in the tissues surrounding an implant

The etiology of the implant infection is conditioned by the status of the tissue surrounding the implant, degree of roughness, and excessive mechanical load. Bacterial flora, which are associated with periodontitis (gum disease surrounding natural teeth) and peri-implantitis, are found to be similar.

Diagnosis is based on changes of color in the gingiva, bleeding and probing depth of peri-implant pockets, presence of pus discharge, X-ray, and loss of bone height around the tooth. Treatment will differ depending upon whether it is a case of peri-implant mucositis or peri-implantitis. The management of implant infection should be focused on the control of infection, the cleaning of the implant surface, and regeneration of the alveolar bone.