Stage 1: Gingivitis
Gingivitis is the first and most common step of periodontal disease. This stage is characterized by plaque buildup around the gums that causes inflammation. Unlike the following two stages of periodontitis, gingivitis is entirely treatable. Most cases of this stage are treated by proper hygiene: brushing and flossing your teeth diligently. Progressed cases of gingivitis will require a periodontist’s attention.
- Poor oral hygiene
- Smoking tobacco
- Poor nutrition
- Hormonal changes e.g. pregnancy
- Bright red/purple gums
- Tender gums
- Swollen gums
- Bleeding when brushing/flossing teeth
Stage 2: Periodontitis
Periodontitis, the second stage of periodontal disease, occurs when plaque continues to build up, causing an infection in the mouth. Pockets of built-up bacteria form under the gums, placing the jaw bones at risk of serious damage. Teeth are also at risk of falling out with periodontitis.
- All previous causes of stage 1
- Specific medications
- Substance abuse
- All previous symptoms of stage 1
- Gaps or pockets developing between teeth
- Pus between gums and teeth
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Pain and discomfort in the gums
- Poorly aligned ‘bite’ develops
Stage 3: Advanced Periodontitis
During the third and final stage (advanced periodontitis), previously formed pockets of plaque grow bigger, affecting a wider area of jaw bone. This stage is painful and uncomfortable, and the gums recede excessively. In many cases, teeth must be professionally removed to salvage the remaining jaw bone.
- All previous causes of stages 1 & 2
- Old age
- Progressed periodontitis
- Consistently bad breath
- Severe toothaches
- Teeth falling out
- Excessively receded gums
Periodontal disease is irreversible, destructive, and unpleasant, but most importantly: it’s avoidable. It’s imperative to maintain great oral health, schedule regular dental cleanings and commit to healthy habits!
At Periodontal Health Center, we specialize in bone regeneration, laser gum surgery, dental implants, periodontal disease therapy and more. If you’re experiencing the symptoms of gingivitis, improve your oral hygiene and schedule an appointment with our periodontists as soon as possible. If you are looking for gum disease treatment, Tampa or New Port Richey our PHC offices have you covered.