About Periodontal disease

About Periodontal Disease

The following synopsis of periodontal disease has been simplified for the general public. It is not inclusive, but speaks generally about the nature of this disease.

Periodontal disease is a diseased state of the tissues surrounding the tooth. These tissues are the gingiva (gum), bone and periodontal ligament. As the disease progresses these tissues are eroded. As these tissues erode, the tooth looses its support. Ultimately, the tooth becomes too lose to function with and is lost. Although there are regenerative techniques for treating periodontal disease, as a generalization, the destruction caused by this disease is permanent. So it is important to address this problem as soon as it is diagnosed.

Periodontal disease progresses from Gingivitis. As its name suggests, gingivitis is an inflammation of the gingiva. Gingivitis is one of the most common diseases know to man and fortunately is easily reversible. Gingivitis is caused by bacterial plaque which sticks to the tooth surface. The byproducts from these bacteria stimulate the body to send cells into the gingiva, to fend off the bacteria, which results in the inflamed state. This action by the body is called an immune response. As it turns out, most of the destruction done to the bone, gingiva, and periodontal ligament are due to this immune response, collateral damage if you will.

To summarize this process, resident bacteria in the mouth mix together with food particles and elements of the saliva to form a sticky invisible film layer called Plaque. Plaque accumulates on the tooth surface continuously throughout the day and night. The bacterial byproducts from this plaque in close proximity to the gingiva create an immune response from the body which results in inflammation of the gingiva called Gingivitis. Left unchecked, Gingivitis will progress into Periodontitis. Gingivitis is reversible, Periodontitis is not.

The following sections to the left go into more detail about periodontal disease.

About Jack Wasserstein, DDS

I am a Periodontist in Valencia CA and I have been in private practice in since 1990. I am blessed to be able to say that my work is also my play. I hope to share my insights, with you, that I have cultivated over the last 20 years.

One Response to About Periodontal disease

  1. joan culver May 19, 2010 at 4:45 pm #

    is perodonal desease painful? my gums ache

Leave a Reply