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Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums, usually caused by a bacterial infection. If left untreated, it can become a more serious infection known as periodontitis. Gingivitis and periodontitis are major causes of tooth loss in adults. The symptoms are:
• gums that are red, tender, or swollen
• gums that bleed when you brush or floss your teeth
• gums that have pulled away from the teeth
• loose teeth
• a change in how your teeth fit together when you bite (malocclusion)
• pus between teeth and gums
• pain when chewing
• sensitive teeth
• partial dentures that no longer fit
• foul-smelling breath that does not go away after you brush your teeth
HOW IS GINGIVITIS DIAGNOSED?
The dentist will examine the mouth and teeth and look for soft, swollen, red-purple gums. The gums are most often painless or mildly tender. The dentist will use a probe to closely examine the gums in order to determine if it is gingivitis or periodontitis. Dental x-rays may be done to see if the disease has spread to the supporting structures of the teeth.
HOW IS GINGIVITIS TREATED?
One must practice proper oral hygiene to treat gingivitis. One should also cut back on any smoking and control diabetes. Other treatments include deep cleaning of teeth, antibiotic medications, and surgery.
DID YOU KNOW?
Smoking and chewing tobacco are leading causes of Gingivitis