Severe Gingivitis

What is Severe Gingivitis?

Gingivitis is a form of periodontal (gum) disease. It's an inflammation of the gums caused by the build-up of plaque, a bacterial film that develops on teeth if they are not brushed and flossed regularly. If left untreated, gingivitis can lead to more serious periodontal diseases. Severe gingivitis is the most advanced stage of gingivitis, and can cause tooth and bone loss due to the chronic destruction of the gums and surrounding tissues.

Causes of Severe Gingivitis

The same factors that cause mild and moderate gingivitis can lead to severe gingivitis. This includes poor oral hygiene, inadequate nutrition, tobacco use, diabetes, hormonal changes, and certain medications. However, the main cause of severe gingivitis is an untreated episode of mild or moderate gingivitis. Plaque build-up can lead to inflammation and infection, which can cause gum tissue to break down and can lead to tooth and bone loss.

Signs and Symptoms of Severe Gingivitis

The primary signs of severe gingivitis are:

  • Red, swollen, and tender gums
  • Gums that bleed easily
  • Receding gums
  • Gum abscesses
  • Bad breath
  • A change in the fit of dentures

Treatment of Severe Gingivitis

The primary treatment for severe gingivitis is professional cleaning and scaling. This involves a dentist or hygienist removing plaque and tartar from above and below the gum line. The dentist may also prescribe an antibacterial mouthwash or antibiotics to help fight off any infections. Additionally, the dentist may recommend a special toothpaste or gel to help treat the condition. If severe gingivitis is not treated in a timely manner, the teeth and jawbone may be adversely affected.

Preventing Severe Gingivitis

The best way to prevent severe gingivitis is to practice good oral hygiene. This includes brushing and flossing twice daily and visiting your dentist regularly for professional cleaning and check-ups. If you have a predisposition to periodontal disease, it is especially important that you practice good oral hygiene.