What is the difference between periodontitis and gingivitis?

Apr 19, 2022

Gingivitis and periodontitis are both conditions that affect the gums. Gingivitis is a milder form of gum disease and usually only causes inflammation of the gums. Periodontitis is a more severe form of gum disease and can lead to inflammation and loss of tissue and bone around the teeth. If you have any questions or concerns, be sure to visit your Perth dentist. They will be able to help determine if you have gingivitis or periodontitis and develop a treatment plan accordingly.

The difference between gingivitis and periodontitis.

Gingivitis occurs when plaque has developed at the gum line and has not been adequately removed. The gums become inflamed, and the patient risks periodontitis. Periodontitis is when the tooth’s supporting bone starts to deteriorate. Gingivitis is the warning before the more devastating periodontitis.

Both of these are part of the general diagnosis of gum disease, bacterial growth in the gum tissue around the tooth. It starts with gingivitis, where the gums are inflamed and may start to bleed with brushing. Early periodontitis is where the bone begins to show some damage. Other symptoms may not be noticeable. Moderate periodontitis is where the bone has deteriorated to the point that teeth feel loose. And finally, advanced periodontitis is when the teeth are so loose it becomes difficult to eat and sometimes talk. By the time the fourth stage hits, it is probably impossible to save the teeth.

How to prevent gum disease?

Regular brushing and flossing can help prevent gingivitis and its ultimate periodontitis. During dental visits, you should mention anything that seems out of the ordinary so that the hygienists and dentist can check further. With early intervention, it is possible to save teeth and combat this serious condition.

What is plaque?

Plaque is a thin film of bacteria that hardens into tartar. If the plaque moves below the gum line, infections result. Then the teeth start to separate from the gums, becoming loose. This instability and infections can mean the loss of the tooth or the necessity for the dentist to extract it.

What are the risk factors for gingivitis and periodontitis?

There are some risk factors involved in gingivitis and periodontitis. This is why the office asks that you provide information about health issues and lifestyle options.

  • Tobacco products
  • Diabetes
  • Crooked teeth
  • Broken fillings
  • Medications
    • Steroids
    • Anticonvulsants
    • Calcium channel blockers
    • Chemotherapy
  • Compromised immunity

Consult a qualified dentist if you have any concerns about your oral health. They can help develop the best treatment plan for your dental needs.  

Schedule an appointment at Herriott Street Dental

The most important thing you can do to prevent periodontal disease is to visit us at Herriott Street Dental for your regular check-up appointment. During the initial visit, explain any ongoing conditions or concerns you may have. Our Perth dentist is trained to listen to your information carefully and check out every aspect of your mouth and teeth. Our goal is to give you the best teeth and gums possible. We will also check your mouth for any signs of other issues. Contact us today.