Gingivitis, or early gum disease, is a widespread dental problem that can progress to full-blown periodontitis if it is left untreated. Gingivitis can eventually lead to tooth loss and serious infections if no action is taken to stop the infection. Here is a look at the most common symptoms of gingivitis.
Gum Inflammation and Bleeding
Gums often show signs of inflammation as bacteria attack them, including bleeding and tenderness. For many patients, these symptoms are most apparent when they brush and floss their teeth. As gingivitis worsens, pain can also appear when patients chew food.
Known clinically as halitosis, bad breath is strongly associated with gingivitis. The bacteria involved in gum disease produce sulfurous compounds, which smell like rotten eggs. With the right experience, a dentist can often pinpoint gingivitis as the cause behind the halitosis based on the type of odor alone.
Progression of gingivitis may be marked by abscesses, jawbone damage and tooth loss. The bacteria frequently create fissures in the gums, which places patients at risk of systemic infections if the bacteria enter the blood stream. Fortunately, timely use of periodontics can stop and reverse gingivitis before these issues develop. At a consultation with our dentist, patients can learn more about gingivitis and how it can be prevented.