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A Quick Look at Gum Care - Diseases and Treatments

By Eddie Storms Subscribe to RSS | March 27th 2012 | Views:

When people hear the word “dentist”, they usually think of doctors who specialize in the treatment and maintenance of their teeth. While it’s true that dentists focus on the teeth, they also take care of other parts of the oral cavity, like the gums.

Gums are the pink tissues that support the teeth. In medical terms, they are known as gingiva. The gums cover the bone where the teeth are attached. Other than protecting the teeth, the gums also minimize the friction caused food rubbing on the teeth and jawbones.

Healthy gums have a “coral pink” color. They also have a smooth appearance around the teeth, a firm texture, and an inability to react to disturbances like the passage of food and the brushing of teeth. If your gums exhibit characteristics different from those cited above, you should see your dentist, because you might have gum diseases.

Gum disease has two stages: gingivitis and periodontitis. Swollen and/or bleeding gums are the most common signs of gingivitis. Other signs of gingivitis include loose teeth, receding gums, bite pattern changes and even pus.

Poor dental hygiene is the main cause of gingivitis, according to Atlanta cosmetic dentists. When teeth aren’t cleaned properly, plaque builds up in the teeth and gums. The plaque, filled with bacteria, infects the gums, causing gingivitis. Bad breath or halitosis can also be considered a symptom of gingivitis, since bad breath is caused by the same bacteria that infect the gums.

Left untreated, gingivitis can eventually progress to periodontitis. Periodontitis has the same signs and symptoms often associated with gingivitis, but the former is more difficult to treat than the latter. Periodontitis can cause massive gum damage, weakening the bond between the teeth and jawbone and causing tooth loss in adults. In this case, your Atlanta cosmetic dentists have to prescribe dental implants, dentures and other treatments to help address the issue.

Of course, gum disease isn’t the only condition Atlanta cosmetic dentists can treat. They can perform other procedures designed to improve and maintain the appearance of your teeth, such as teeth whitening, veneers, gold and porcelain inlays, dental bonding, dental crowns, athletic guards and basic prophylaxis. Most of the procedures cited above fall under the prosthodontics part of cosmetic dentistry; the part of cosmetic dentistry that deals with the alignment of your teeth is called orthodontics. For more information on gum diseases, you can read the article on

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