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It is important in the middle years of life and later to continue good oral hygiene habits and the practice of having regular dental checkups. Studies have found that after the age of 50 more than half the people in America have periodontal disease. At the age of 65, nearly everybody has this disease.
Coarse of Periodontal disease
The combination of bacterial and the roughness of the resulting calculus injures the surrounding gum tissue and makes it susceptible to infection and recession. The irritation causes Swelling, inflammation, and bleeding into the crevices between the
teeth and gums, which is one of the early signs of impaired tissue
The inflammation of the gums, known as gingivitis, can spread to
the roots of the teeth if not treated. The gums separate from the teeth, forming pockets that till up with more food particles and colonies of bacteria.
As the disease progresses, the bone support for the teeth is weakened and the affected teeth begin to loosen. And drift from their normal position. Finally, unless the disease is treated in time, the teeth may be lost
Periodontal disease is sometimes called pyorrhea, a Greek word meaning a discharge of pus. But pyorrhea is a somewhat misleading term because it identifies only one manifestation of the disease, an abscess that usually forms along the side of an affected tooth. In some cases, a membrane forms around the abscess, creating a pus-filled cyst in the tooth socket.
Other Signs and symptoms
Another manifestation of periodontal disease is periodontal atrophy, or recession of the gingival, or gum tissue, and the underlying bone away from the outer layer of the tooth that joins it to its socket.
A recession tends to expose the dentin below the gum line, which is not protected by a layer of enamel. The exposed dentin may be hypersensitive to hot or cold foods or beverages, air, and sweet or sour food flavors.
Inflammation of the gingival tissue in periodontal disease may be increased in intensity by toxic chemicals from tobacco smoke, bacterial infections, vitamin deficiencies, and defective dental restorations.
The normal pink color of the gingival tissue may be altered by periodontal disease to a bright red or a darker coloration ranging to bluish purple.
The inflamed gingival tissue may lead to a complication called periodontitis in which the bone under the gum tissue is gradually destroyed, widening the crevice between the tooth and surrounding tissues.
Pregnant women seem particularly vulnerable to periodontitis and gingivitis if they have been experiencing periodontal disorders because the temporary hormonal
imbalance of the pregnancy tends to exaggerate the effects of this
One kind of gingivitis that involves projections of gum tissue between the teeth is sometimes referred to as trench mouth because it was not an uncommon form of the periodontal disease affecting soldiers during World War I. The infection is associated with poor oral hygiene along with nutritional deficiencies and generally depressed condition of health.
Causes of periodontal disease
At one time it was assumed that periodontal diseases were associated with the lifestyles of persons living in more technologically advanced societies, where soft, rich foods are eaten regularly, providing materials toward the formation of plaque and support of bacteria in the plaque.
But recent investigations show that people living in the less developed nations, who are relatively free of tooth decay, eventually develop periodontal disease.
However, this does not alter the fact that the accumulation of plaque and harmful bacteria are the chief cause of periodontal. Disease as well as of tooth decay.
Although periodontal disease generally becomes troublesome in middle age, there is some evidence that early symptoms of gingival
disorders occur during childhood or adolescence. Also, because
more people live longer today, periodontal disease has become
more common than in the past.
The nervous habit, often unconsciously done, of clenching and grinding the teeth can contribute to the development of the periodontal disease. Bruxism frequently occurs during sleep.
Another contributing cause to periodontal disease is
repeated shock or undue pressure on a tooth because of malocclusion, or an improper bite. This effect accelerates damage to the tooth and gum structure during such simple activities as biting and chewing.
What is the Treatment of Periodontal disease?
Periodontal treatment may include a variety of techniques ranging
from plaque removal to oral surgery to form new contours on the alveolar bone surrounding the tooth. If treatment not begun until the periodontal disease is well advanced, it may be difficult to fit replacement teeth, or dentures, as substitutes for lost teeth.
Dentures fit the ridges of the jaws, and if the top edge of the ridge has been destroyed by periodontal disease, the procedure for holding the denture firmly in place will be complicated.
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