David Kamer, DMD

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Gum Disease

Gum Disease (Gingivitis)
When plaque deposits on your teeth go unchecked, they harden and form tartar. Plaque and tartar can irritate and inflame your gums, possibly resulting in the destruction of the tissues that support the teeth including your gums, periodontal ligaments and tooth sockets.

The following raise your risk for gingivitis:
• Certain infections and body-wide (systemic) diseases
• Poor dental hygiene
• Pregnancy (hormonal changes increase the sensitivity of the gums)
• Uncontrolled diabetes
• Misaligned teeth, rough edges of fillings, and ill-fitting or unclean mouth appliances (such as braces, dentures, bridges, and crowns)
• Use of certain medications, including phenytoin, bismuth, and some birth control pills

Symptoms include:
• Bleeding gums (blood on toothbrush even with gentle brushing of the teeth)
• Bright red or red-purple appearance to gums
• Gums that are tender when touched, but otherwise painless
• Mouth sores
• Swollen gums
• Shiny appearance to gums