A common question that every person with gum disease wants to know:
Is my gum disease treatable? Can it be reversed?
It depends on the type of gum disease you have.
Gum disease can definitely be treated and stopped from worsening before it causes serious damage to your mouth, jaw and overall health. Depending on what type of gum disease you have, it may even be reversible.
If you understand the different types of gum disease and can diagnose which one you have, then you will be able to determine if it is reversible or not.
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Gingivitis IS reversible. Severe periodontal gum disease is not reversible. It is treatable, however, and can still be stopped from creating severe issues with your teeth.
It is highly recommended that you visit your dentist, who can identify the type and severity of your gum disease and offer you treatment options.
Is gingivitis reversible?
Good news! Gingivitis is both treatable and reversible.
Of the different types of gum disease, gingivitis the only gum disease that is reversible. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gum tissue around the teeth caused by plaque built up on your teeth. Over time it becomes harder and turns into tartar, which also irritates gums. Sometimes the effects are mild enough that people are unaware that they even have it. Pregnant women can be more susceptible to gingivitis.
Because it is usually caused by poor dental habits, gingivitis is preventable. If treated in a timely manner, it is also reversible.
How do you treat gingivitis?
Gingivitis can be reversed by removing the tartar that is built up on your gums. Schedule a trip to your dentist for a professional tartar cleaning of your teeth. Your dentist can remove tartar that is irritating your gums by cleaning and scaling your teeth.
After your dentist has given you a thorough cleaning, you will need to follow up with the proper brushing of the teeth twice a day and flossing at least once a day. You should also make sure that you are getting an annual checkup to make sure they remain clean.
With a professional cleaning by your dentist, everyday brushing, and flossing, you can reverse gingivitis and have regular, healthy gums again.
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Is periodontal gum disease reversible?
Periodontitis, or periodontal gum disease is, unfortunately, NOT reversible.
Just because it is not reversible though, does not mean that it cannot be treated.
Periodontal gum disease can be halted with treatment. This is critical because, with successful treatment, you may be able to save teeth that are on their way to being lost. You definitely want to save your teeth if possible. Cosmetic dentistry may be able to correct some of the issues caused by gum disease, such as elongated teeth, but not in all cases.
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How do you treat periodontal gum disease?
If your gum disease has advanced from gingivitis to periodontitis, then you will need to see your dentist for advanced treatment. The toxins from the buildup of bacterial plaque on your teeth will affect not just your gums but will spread to the bone and ligaments of your teeth. This will damage the bone and support tissues and your teeth will be in jeopardy and may need to be removed. Even as your teeth begin to near this advanced stage, there still may be treatment options to save them.
Possible periodontal gum disease treatments:
- Scaling and root planing
- Pocket reduction procedure
- Gum grafts
- Bone grafting and regeneration
- Brushing, flossing, and maintenance
- Antimicrobial mouthwash
- Quitting smoking
- Ongoing dental checkups and care
We ask that if you believe that you have gum disease, to please make an appointment with an experienced dental professional. There is still hope for your teeth.
David Wilhite is a Plano Dentist specializing in gum disease treatment with over 30 years of experience in general and cosmetic dentistry. He can help you with everything from a consultation, to a check-up, to cleaning, whitening, and full mouth restoration.
Together we will transform your smile!