Gingivitis. Rochester, NY residents probably know it as a common oral health problem. Of course, gingivitis can remain fairly minor and improve readily with regular brushing and a thorough flossing routine.
But if not treated for long periods of time, gingivitis can grow more severe and even lead to worse conditions including major gum disease and eventual tooth loss.
At Dr. David K Skeels office, we help our patients in Rochester, NY with gingivitis prevention and necessary treatment through education and regular cleanings. To help you protect your mouth, even between appointments, read about gingivitis from our Rochester, NY dental professionals.
Some people do not experience any pain with gingivitis, making it difficult to identify gingivitis for themselves. The following symptoms may or may not present in many cases of gingivitis:
- Bad breath
- Dark red gums instead of a healthy pink
- Gums that bleed easily, especially when brushing and/or flossing
- Gums that pull away from teeth
- Sensitive or loose teeth
- Soft and puffy gums
- Tender, swollen gums
Many patients are tempted to ignore these symptoms or dismiss them as minor. Instead, learn whether the problem indicates other oral problems.
Causes and Risk Factors
Certain demographics and lifestyles have a higher risk for gingivitis than others. However, anyone can contract gingivitis.
Gingivitis occurs when plaque buildup turns into tartar over time, which irritates gums. Risk factors for this condition include:
- Broken fillings, or dentures that don't fit properly
- Certain medications
- Chewing tobacco or smoking
- Crooked teeth
- Dry mouth
- Hormone fluctuations (due to pregnancy, menstruation, birth control, or other conditions)
- Infrequent oral care (brushing teeth fewer than two times daily and/or ignoring flossing)
- Poor immune system (due to HIV, AIDS, leukemia, or other diseases)
Your dentist can treat mild to serious cases of gingivitis fairly easily. Usually, this treatment consists of a professional dental-care session followed by treatment at home. For the at-home treatment portion, electric toothbrushes are more effective than manual.
A gingivitis treatment effort may include any combination of:
- Possible dental restorations (fixing crowns and/or fillings)
- Professional removal of any plaque and tartar
- Regular brushing and flossing
If you believe you may have gingivitis, your Rochester, NY dentist can help. Call us at (585) 467- 7000. Dr. David K Skeels can diagnose the issue quickly and start treatment immediately. Do not wait until your condition develops into a severe oral health concern.