Gum infections are usually preventable with an effective daily oral hygiene routine and regular hygienist visits. However, when gum infections occur, it is usually treated by seeing an emergency dentist.
Gum infections are caused by a build-up of bacteria that has collected as plaque around teeth. If plaque is left on teeth for a long period of time and allowed to mature, gum infections can develop.
There are two types of gum disease:
Gingivitis occurs when the gums become inflamed. In Gingivitis, the damage is reversible with treatment. The treatment for Gingivitis involves seeing a hygienist for teeth cleaning.
Periodontitis develops if gingivitis is left untreated for a period of time. In Periodontitis bone loss occurs and this is irreversible. The treatment for Periodontitis involves seeing a Specialist Periodontist for deep teeth cleaning under local anaesthetic.
If Periodontitis is left to progress, it can cause the loss of the bone that anchors the teeth in the jaw, causing teeth to become loose and lead to eventual loss of teeth.
More than 50% of the population suffer from some type of gum disease. The real danger with gum disease is that it can progress painlessly and sufferers may not notice the damage it is causing until its too late and teeth have to be extracted due to severe bone loss caused by gum disease and repeated gum infections.
Professional cleaning of teeth and an effective daily oral hygiene regime is often enough to treat gum disease. You will first need to see one of our dentists for an assessment of your gums. The treatment will involve seeing either the hygienist or the specialist periodontist depending on severity of the disease.
Whilst ineffective teeth cleaning is the number cause of gum disease, other possible causes of gum infections are:
Symptoms of a gum abscess could be toothache, nausea, fever, swollen glands, tooth sensitivity, redness of the gums, tenderness, bad breath and pain while chewing.
In cases where a gum boil has developed, patients will need to visit the emergency dentist, who will initially drain the infection, provide antibiotics and then carry out deep gum cleaning.