Gum Disease FAQ

What is gum disease?

Gum disease is one of the main causes of tooth loss. It is inflammation of the gums caused by bacteria, that eventually results in bone loss. Signs of gum disease can be bleeding from the gums, loose teeth or teeth drifting from their normal position. Gum recession and bad breath can also be signs of gum disease although there can be other causes for these.

Can affected teeth be saved?

If gum disease is diagnosed early tooth loss can be avoided – many teeth can be saved with proper treatment. Even where they have become loose and drifted, the process can be halted provided sufficient bone support remains around the teeth.

What does a periodontist do?

A periodontist is a dentist with additional qualifications in the diagnosis and treatment of problems that affect the gum and bone around teeth. They work with the hygienist to provide complete dental care, and perform specialist surgery when it is required.

What does a dental hygienist do?

As part of gum disease treatment, the teeth are cleaned in a special way by our experienced dental hygienists to improve the health of the gums. They will also provide you with careful instruction in oral hygiene techniques which are tailored to your specific case. Our patients tell us that with treatment their mouths feel better and more comfortable and they enjoy the prospect of keeping their teeth longer.

Will I need surgery?

Periodontal surgery is sometimes necessary for more complex cases. This can be used to correct remaining gum problems and also areas of gum recession.