Periodontal diseases (also called gingivitis and periodontitis) are those diseases that affect one or more of the periodontal tissues (the bone and gums which support the teeth):
While many different diseases affect the tooth-supporting structures, plaque-induced inflammatory lesions make up the huge majority of periodontal diseases which are divided into two categories, gingivitis (infected, bleeding gums) and periodontitis (involving progressive loss of the bone around the teeth, and if left untreated, can lead to the loosening and eventual loss of teeth). Gingivitis can be controlled by proper daily cleaning of the oral cavity which includes brushing and flossing. Controlling periodontitis requires more extensive home treatment routines combined with more frequent dental hygiene visits.
Qualicum Dental has two hygienists to ensure patients recieve the extra dental care to help keep the periodontal tissues healthy in our patients. Once deep pockets have started to form around teeth it is that much more difficult to keep clean at home. Your dentist and hygienist can help prolong how long you will keep your teeth….
"Hopefully, one more day than you will need them!"
Plaque is a mixture of bacteria, minerals and some food leftovers. It irritates the gums, or gingiva and causes inflammation over time (gingivitis). The bacteria make it stick, the minerals make it hard, and the longer plaque is left on the teeth, the harder it gets. After 24 hours, some plaque hardens into calculus, otherwise known as tartar. The difference between plaque and calculus is that calculus does not come off with the brush and floss anymore. This causes an ongoing state of inflammation of the gingiva.
Because the bone is alive, it has cells in it that build bone, and cells that break down bone. Usually these work at the same speed, and keep each other in balance. The chemical by-products of ongoing inflammation stimulate the cells that break down bone, which now start working faster than the cells that build bone. The result is that you lose bone, and the loss of bone and attachment tissues is called periodontal disease.