Explaining the 3 Stages of Gum Disease

Posted on: August 12, 2019

Gum disease can be grueling to deal with, but modern dentistry continues to evolve, which has allowed people to get through its different stages. Just like with any other disease, gum disease also has stages, which begin more mildly and end up being pretty severe. 

Most people are aware that gum disease is serious, but they may not understand that the different stages outline how bad the disease is. For example, if the gum disease is still during the first phase, then it may not be as bad. However, if it’s in the last stage, it may be harder to treat. Want to know more about these stages? Here, we dive into them one by one so you know exactly what is involved in each!

The three stages of gum disease

Understanding these three stages can be helpful if you think that you may be experiencing any gum disease symptoms. Keep reading to find out more!

1. Gingivitis

The first stage of gum disease is gingivitis, which is the earliest and least severe stage. Typically, there is inflammation of the gums, which is caused by a buildup of plaque. The plaque build-up may be a result of poor oral hygiene or cavities from sugar. The plaque has toxins that can cause gingivitis, but thankfully, the disease can be somewhat salvaged since the infection has not reached the bone or connective tissue yet.

2. Periodontitis

The second stage of gum disease happens to be pretty serious. Periodontitis occurs when the supporting bone and fibers that hold the teeth in place are infected so severely that damage is almost irreversible. Food particles and plaque may get trapped below the gum line in a pocket that can cause even further damage.

Typically, an oral surgeon will recommend that intense oral cleanings are done and potential scaling of the gums to remove diseased areas.

3. Advanced periodontitis

When the periodontitis becomes severe, it has reached the final stage of gum disease. In this stage, the bone and supporting fibers are essentially destroyed. When this stage is reached, the teeth are at risk of falling out or becoming very infected. Loose teeth can cause an uneven bite, and infections can cause decay.

Advanced periodontitis is difficult to treat, but with the help of an oral surgeon and a periodontist, treatment can remove the diseased areas. Once the diseased areas are removed, regeneration can take place through tissue grafting.

Have questions about the stages of gum disease?

Gum disease is complex, but being aware of what each stage looks like can be helpful to someone who isn’t sure what stage their gum disease is in. If you have more questions about the three stages of gum disease, then reach out to our office so we can help you further. Give us a call or stop by our office today; we are here to assist in any way we can. 

Request an appointment here: https://www.stgeorgedentalcare.com or call St. George Dental Care at (435) 465-3211 for an appointment in our St George office.

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