Gum disease: What are your gums telling you?
Dramatics aside, it is important to understand these are symptoms that you do not want to ignore. When a cut or wound becomes inflamed or swollen, it is a red light telling you something is wrong. Similarly, if your gums are bleeding and sore, the reason is pretty clear. What are your gums telling you? Here is the inside scoop you need to know.
How do you know if your gums are healthy?
Gums, like every other part of your body, are often unnoticed until something goes wrong. If you aren’t looking for any symptoms, they are easy to miss.
Healthy gums are pink and firm to the touch. Bleeding red sore swollen sensitive gums, however, are early indicators of gingivitis and should not be overlooked. Gum disease is very manageable when diagnosed and treated in the early stages. If these warning signs are ignored, then this relatively minor irritation only gets worse and may even cause irreversible damage.
What are the symptoms of an advanced gum infection?
Periodontitis is the advanced stage of this nasty disease that affects the health of your gums, and this is also the point when really serious problems begin to appear. These include, but are not limited to:
- Receding gums
- Shifting or loose teeth
- Chronic bad breath accompanied by a bad taste in your mouth
- Pus that appears between the teeth at the gum line
- Changes to your bite because of altered teeth position
What can you do if you think your gums are infected?
Contact your dentist for an immediate gum disease evaluation and treatment. The risk for irreversible damage increases the longer you wait. If ignored too long, you may even lose your teeth or suffer permanent damage to your jaw bone. Ongoing research studies also link this advanced inflammation and infection of the gums to other health risks, including:
- Heart disease
- Pulmonary diseases, such as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD
- Premature or low weight births
Understanding the causes, symptoms of gum disease and how to effectively treat it is important for your oral health. If you have any questions, please ask.