You just got home from your dental appointment and realized you forgot to ask all the questions you have about recognizing, and hopefully avoiding, gum disease. Never fear, because Nashville, TN periodontist Dr. Bill Akin and his team of professionals are ready to answer your most pressing concerns. To help you understand gum disease, check out these frequently asked questions:

What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease
happens when unwanted bacteria build up in the mouth. The bacteria settle in the periodontal pockets between the gums and teeth, out of reach of toothbrushes and dental floss. As the bacteria develops, it eats away at healthy gum tissues and bone around your teeth. Without intervention from a trained periodontist, gum disease will advance from gingivitis to periodontitis, leading to eventual tooth and bone loss.

Can Anyone Get Gum Disease?
Although gum disease typically occurs in adults, it occasionally presents itself in teens and children who have not had adequate dental care during childhood. However, the diagnosis of both gingivitis and periodontitis commonly happens as people age.

Can Gum Disease Be Treated with At-Home Care?
Patients diagnosed with gum disease should absolutely follow a solid oral hygiene regimen at home. However, at-home tools cannot destroy bacteria or remove damaged gum tissues to support gum reattachment and ward off tooth loss. Only trained periodontists like Dr. Akin and his team members can effectively stop gum disease from getting worse.

What Are the Warning Signs of Gum Disease?
In general, the earliest warning signs of gum disease can be easy to overlook. They include swollen gums, red gums, bad breath, bleeding gums, and gum recession. Patients who notice even subtle changes in their oral health and gums should immediately contact our periodontist for a thorough evaluation.

Is Treating Gum Disease Uncomfortable?
While no one wants to hear that they have gum disease, people affected by this common condition can get comfortable treatments thanks to advances in dental technology and protocols. LANAP® gum disease therapy, sedation dentistry, and other leading-edge equipment allow Dr. Akin to help patients achieve predictable outcomes with minimal discomfort. 

Do you have bleeding gums?
Call our Nashville, TN office at (615) 800-3686 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Akin.