Understanding periodontal disease: Causes, Stages and Natural Reversal | Kirkland Premier Dentistry
Photo of the office manager on the phone

Understanding periodontal disease: Causes, Stages and Natural Reversal

October 29, 2023

Gum disease in adults is more common in the United States than you may think. Almost half of all adults suffer from some form of gum disease. Gum disease is also called periodontal disease. The most common symptoms of gum disease include swollen gums, inflamed and sensitive gums, bad breath, etc. Gum disease, if left untreated, turns severe and may cause tooth loss. 

The best thing you can do to avoid getting gum disease is to maintain a daily oral hygiene routine. Good oral health often indicates good overall health. Getting regular dental appointments also helps you prevent gum disease. You can take care of your teeth and protect them for a lifetime. 

What Causes Periodontal Disease?

It is already known that the accumulation of plaque on the teeth is the main reason for the development of gingivitis. Gingivitis is also called early-stage gum disease. As gingivitis progresses, it turns into Periodontitis or advanced gum disease. 

Here Are Some Other Reasons That Contribute To Gum Disease 

Neglecting oral hygiene – This is the primary reason for gum disease. Those who do not brush and floss daily are more likely to suffer from gum disease because irregular cleaning schedules allow the accumulation of plaque. Maintaining good oral hygiene should become a priority for all. 

Smoking and tobacco use – Smoking and using tobacco products is the worst habit for your oral health and general health. Smoking drastically increases the chances of getting gum disease. You should quit using tobacco and seek help if you are finding it difficult to start the quitting journey. 

Genetics – For some people, their genes make them prone to gum disease. People with such genetic makeup should pay great attention to their oral health and should get regular dental checkups. 

Certain medications – Certain antibiotics and other medications can cause side effects that may contribute to gum disease. While many medications may not directly cause gum disease, they may raise the likelihood of getting periodontal disease. 

Certain chronic illnesses – Some chronic conditions like diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis may make one prone to develop periodontal disease. 

Is Periodontal Disease Contagious?

It is a genuine question that may come to your mind after getting to know what you know about gum disease. The answer to this question is yes. Periodontal disease is contagious. It may spread from one affected person to another healthy person. Just like one would assume, it is spread through saliva. Drinking from the same cup, kissing, or using the same spoon to eat may increase the likelihood of getting gum disease. 

Don’t worry. Gum disease mostly spreads through long interactions and contact. A one-time incident or occasional interactions may not certainly spread gum disease. Long-term contact increases the risk of contracting periodontal disease. However, you should know that gum disease is preventable and also treatable. 

What Are The Stages Of Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease has four stages. 

Gingivitis – This is the first stage of gum disease. You may experience red and inflamed gums. You may experience swollen and bleeding gums. You should seek a dentist’s help at the first signs of gum disease. 

Early periodontitis – This is the second stage of periodontitis. In this stage, you can notice receding gums. There may be slight bone loss and fiber loss. 

Moderate periodontitis – In this stage of periodontitis, you may experience further bone and fiber loss. You may see gum recession to the extent that pockets form between the teeth and gums.

Advanced periodontitis – This is the fourth and most advanced stage of periodontitis. You may experience severe bone and fiber loss. This is the stage that leads to tooth loss. 

How Long Can You Keep Your Teeth With Periodontal Disease?

Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease. This is the stage that goes unnoticed for most people. You may notice inflammation and other symptoms that may cause some discomfort. Chronic stress is one of the chief factors that make one prone to periodontal disease. Chronic stress suppresses the immune system and makes one susceptible to periodontal disease. Even though each patient may have a different cause, the later stages of periodontitis may eventually lead to tooth loss. 

Tooth loss is just one of the serious complications of periodontal disease. If periodontitis remains untreated, you may get serious infections that may travel to your bloodstream. Periodontitis may lead to even more severe conditions than tooth loss. However, you may not always have complete tooth loss due to periodontitis. Timely treatment can save your teeth most of the time. 

Who Is At Risk Of Tooth Loss Due To Periodontal Disease?

  • If you are over 65 years old 
  • If you are a smoker
  • If you use tobacco products
  • If you are a diabetic 
  • If you drink alcohol frequently 
  • If you have osteoporosis 
  • If you do not follow oral hygiene practices 

How To Reverse Periodontal Disease Naturally?

It is known that prevention is better than cure. Preventing disease is easier than reversing it in most cases. If you brush your teeth twice a day and floss your teeth regularly as a part of your daily oral care routine, you are already treating your teeth well. You should see a dentist twice a year so that any signs of gum disease can be caught early. 

Apart from these things, there are some natural remedies that you may follow to prevent gum disease and even reverse gum disease in some cases. 

  • Use an electric toothbrush since it may be gentler on your teeth and gums. Use a soft bristled toothbrush. 
  • Baking soda is known to be an effective cleaning agent for your teeth. Baking soda can kill harmful bacteria and may remove some stains from your teeth. 
  • Rinse your mouth with salt water to reduce pain and inflammation of the gums
  • Try regular oil pulling with edible coconut oil. It is an ancient Indian remedy that is believed to be great for your oral health. 
  • Eat nutritious meals and avoid junk food.
  • Avoid highly acidic foods and drinks.
  • Avoid spicy food since it may irritate your gums and may cause you discomfort.
  • Vitamin C and Vitamin E are considered good for your oral health.
  • Rinse your mouth after every meal to wash away acids 
  • Try to restrict your intake of processed sugar and sugary foods since sugar is believed to contribute to plaque formation 

If you are suffering from any symptoms of gingivitis or periodontitis, you may reach out to us at Kirkland Premier Dentistry. Our team of expert dentists will answer all your questions and suggest possible treatment plans based on your condition. 

we'd love to hear from you

    Thank you!

    Your message has been received. We will respond as soon as possible.
    Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.