Gum Disease

Allison Clark, DMD

General Dentistry located in New Lebanon, OH

Dr. Allison Clark, DMD, at Clark Family Dental in New Lebanon, Ohio, helps you and your family fight gum disease caused by plaque. Also called periodontal disease, this painless infection of the tissues that surround and support your teeth often leads to tooth loss. Call or make an appointment online today to get help fighting gum disease.

Gum Disease Q & A

How is gum disease classified?

Gum disease most commonly results from poor dental hygiene and causes two different types of infections. They are:

Gingivitis

Resulting in red, swollen gums that bleed easily during brushing and flossing, gingivitis occurs when oral hygiene practices fail to remove food. The debris then mixes with your saliva and plaque, forming tartar. Removal is only possible during a professional dental cleaning.

If you fail to have plaque and tartar removed from your teeth, your gums become irritated and develop gingivitis.

Periodontitis

When left untreated, gingivitis often advances to become periodontitis. This form of gum disease develops when plaque spreads below your gum line. Toxins in the bacteria irritate your gums causing them to separate from your teeth. Pockets form, collect additional plaque and bacteria that destroys your gum tissue and bone.

If left untreated, periodontitis eventually leads to tooth loss.

How is gum disease diagnosed?

During your annual checkup with Dr. Clark, she looks for signs of gum disease by:

  • Checking your gums for redness, swelling, and bleeding
  • Examining any areas of sensitivity for receding gums
  • Taking X-rays to look for bone loss

Additionally, Dr. Clark also uses a special probe to measure the depths of the pockets around all of your teeth. Deeper pockets indicate more advanced gum disease.

How is gum disease treated?

The best way to treat and prevent gum disease is by establishing a more consistent and thorough oral hygiene routine which includes brushing and flossing at least twice a day and seeing Dr. Clark annually. Additionally, it’s best to address risk factors, including smoking and uncontrolled diabetes, that contribute to gum disease.

Advanced stages of gum disease often require deep scaling, root planing, and flap surgery to clean your teeth. These surgical treatments enable Dr. Clark to gain access to all tooth surfaces and consist of numbing your gums, lifting them back to clean your teeth, and repositioning them around your teeth to make brushing and flossing easier.

Before you notice the early signs of gum disease, call or make an appointment online with Dr. Allison Clark, DMD, at Clark Family Dental in New Lebanon, Ohio.