Gum Disease

Gum disease.

Gum (periodontal) disease can affect the gums, bone and ligaments that support your teeth. These structures are the foundations which enable you to keep your teeth for life but they can easily be damaged by bacterial infection.

Gum disease is the biggest cause of tooth loss amongst adults in the UK if not treated, affecting one tooth or many.

The simplest form of gum disease, gingivitis, is often a reaction to a build-up of plaque on the teeth. Plaque is a soft, sticky, substance made up of bacteria (biofilm ) which live on the sugars from things we eat and drink. These bacteria produce toxins and cause inflammation.

Plaque builds up in difficult-to-clean areas, especially at the contact areas between the teeth. It is important to clean these areas daily with floss, tape or small interdental brushes.

The earliest sign of gum disease is bleeding and the gums may also look red or swollen. Gingivitis can often be cured simply with good oral hygiene-brushing twice a day and using other mouth hygiene aids, e.g. medicated mouthwash as advised by your dentist or hygienist.

Sometimes even in healthy mouths, gums may become infected and sore and you may notice an unpleasant metallic taste. This is form of acute gingivitis and urgent treatment should be sought. If the disease progresses, pockets in the gum form around the teeth which allow even more plaque to gather.This stage is chronic periodontitis and is usually painless but can become quite severe if not treated ,resulting in loose and drifting teeth. Symptoms to watch out for are gums pulling away from the teeth, pus between the teeth and gums, persistent bad breath or taste, loose teeth that may change position.

Scaling and polishing by a hygienist can remove tartar and stains. In more severe cases deep cleaning below the gum line may be required.

Your Periodontist in Marlow based at Bridge Dental is a specialist in the field of dentistry concerning diseases of the tooth supporting structures.

Occasionally surgery is required under local anesthetic to allow affected areas to be treated. Our specialist periodontist is able to undertake such procedures if required.

  • If gum disease has progressed too far, the tooth or teeth may have to be removed. Chronic gum disease is usually only a problem in adults. Some people are more likely to have periodontal disease than others.
  • Crooked teeth are more difficult to keep clean so the gums supporting these teeth may be more prone to disease.
  • Smoking makes gum disease considerably worse.
  • Diabetes and some other diseases reduce people’s resistance to gum disease. People who have these conditions need to be especially careful about their mouth hygiene.
  • Existing gum disease can be worsened by hormonal changes due to pregnancy or oral contraceptives. Here again good hygiene is important.
  • Some people may have a genetic predisposition to periodontal disease and need to be extra vigilant with their oral hygiene.

Periowave Photodynamic Disinfection (PDD)

Bridge Dental  Marlow’s periodontist specialism is enhanced as it is  one of the first practices in the UK to use Periowave Photodynamic Disinfection (PDD).

Periowave is quick and simple to administer with virtually no treatment discomfort. It uses new non-thermal diode laser technology to target the bacteria that scaling and root planning leave behind. This helps us to treat more complex cases giving the best possible outlook for you and your teeth.

When you next visit us ask your dentist or hygienist for more information about periodontics.

Note: You can also visit The British Dental Health Foundation at

Please call us on 01628 474044 or email us at  [email protected] or use our easy contact form.

How good is your dental Health ? - Take our Fun quiz now - get tips to improve.

How good is your Dental Health?

Click here to enjoy  our Fun Quiz  now – Get tips to improve your score.