In Dental Hygiene

Advanced gum disease is a common dental disease many people face for a variety of reasons. Today we’re going to explore the ins and outs of advanced gum disease, and how you can treat it.

Advanced Gum Disease


Bacteria in the mouth, combined with food particles, create a clear coating on the teeth called plaque. Without regular brushing and flossing, the plaque turns into tartar, and tartar is not good.


Tartar is a solid build-up on the teeth that, unlike plaque, can’t be brushed or flossed away. It requires regular cleanings by a dentist. It is also the substance, that left unchecked, will lead to gum disease.


Gingivitis is the inflammation of the gums that plaque and tartar cause. It is the red and swollen state of the gums that may bleed when chewing or flossing. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease and can be corrected before any bone or tissue loss. Regular flossing, brushing, and cleanings may correct it before it gets worse.


If gingivitis is not reversed it leads to the next stage of gum disease which is called periodontitis. The swelling from gingivitis, when left untreated, can cause the gums to separate from the tooth a create what are called pockets. Healthy gums have a latch on your teeth, sealing out bacteria, plaque, and tartar. As plaque and tartar remain in the mouth, over time the body’s natural response to fighting bacteria also breaks down gum tissue and bone making the gums and teeth separate. The space between them is the pocket.

This pocket breaks the seal between gums and teeth and creates more surface area for plaque and tartar to set in, making things even worse. As those things work themselves further and further below the gum line, the more damage they can do and the harder it is to correct. The pockets can be corrected with periodontal surgery but if they aren’t corrected in time, irreversible bone and tissue loss can sometimes require that a tooth be removed.


The following are common symptoms of advanced gum disease:

  • Halitosis.
  • Teeth that feel loose.
  • Bleeding of the gums.
  • Pain when chewing.
  • Swollen gums.

If you think you have any of these symptoms you can make an appointment for a consultation. At Westmoreland Dental, we offer a variety of services, including gum disease treatment!

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