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Gum Disease Portland OR

Patient with gum disease receiving treatment by Hunter Dental Care in Portland, ORPeriodontitis, commonly known as gum disease, is the number one cause of tooth loss in adults. It starts with a bacterial growth in the mouth, and if not properly treated, it can destroy the tissue and bone that surround the teeth. Gum disease does not usually surface until people are in their 30s or 40s; however, gingivitis (a milder form of gum disease) can develop as early as teenage years.

In the beginning stages of gingivitis, bacteria contained in plaque build-up, which leads to inflamed gums that bleed during brushing. The gums may be irritated, but the damage can be reversed, making gingivitis very treatable. If left untreated, periodontitis can occur. This causes the inner layer of your gums and bones to separate from the teeth, creating pockets for debris. The collection of debris becomes infected, the plaque spreads below the gum line, and toxins are produced that begin to break down the tissue and bone that hold your teeth in place. If periodontitis continues to progress, tooth loss will occur.

Symptoms of Gum Disease

Symptoms of gum disease include:

•  Tender or swollen gums
•  Receding gums
•  Chronic bad breath or taste in mouth
•  Bleeding during tooth brushing
•  Shifted or loose teeth
•  Changes or pain when you bite down
•  A shift in fit of partial dentures

Sometimes symptoms of gum disease are not initially noticeable. In some cases, gum disease may only affect a certain area of your mouth, such as the molars.

Causes of Gum Disease

There are several risk factors to consider. These include:

•  Medications. Many prescriptions or over the counter medications can reduce the production of saliva (a key factor in protecting your mouth against infections). In some cases, medications can cause the gum tissue to abnormally grow, making it difficult to clean your teeth.

•  Diabetes. Those with diabetes are at greater risk of developing an infection. It is also important to maintain a healthy and balanced diet as many foods with antioxidant properties can strengthen your immune system and help your body repair damaged tissue.

•  Smoking. Smoking is a significant risk factor in developing gum disease as well as preventing successful treatment.

•  Hormonal changes. Some women can experience hormonal changes that make gums sensitive and prone to gingivitis.

•  Stress. Stop and smell the roses every once in a while. Your immune system will thank you.

•  Genetics. Simply put, some people are just more susceptible to gum disease than others. If anyone in your family has experienced gum disease, we recommend more frequent check-ups and cleanings.

Treatment of Gum Disease

There are several methods of treatment, depending on how far the disease has progressed. The only way to remove plaque that has built up is through professional cleanings. With regular cleanings, early stages of gum disease can be combated before it becomes a more serious condition. In advanced stages, the periodontal pockets and infection can be treated by scaling and root planing. In severe cases, a periodontist may need to perform gingival flap surgery. The best form of treatment is always preventative. Make sure to practice good oral hygiene by brushing and flossing twice daily. If you have any questions or concerns regarding gum disease contact Hunter Dental Care at (503) 256-3737 to schedule an appointment today.


1739 NE 122nd Ave
Portland, OR 97230-1914


Mondays & Tuesdays: 7 AM - 3 PM
Wednesdays & Thursdays: 8 AM - 5 PM
Fridays: Closed

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Gum Disease • Portland OR Dentist • Hunter Dental Care
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Hunter Dental Care, 1739 NE 122nd Ave, Portland, OR 97230-1914 • (503) 256-3737 • • 7/24/2024 • Key Phrases: dentist Portland OR •