A dental x-ray

Gum Disease Signs: When Should I Be Worried?

Gum disease is a bacterial infection that can lead to serious damage to your gums and jaw bone. This disease is common among adults, causing 70% of adult tooth loss. Gum disease usually develops due to poor oral hygiene.
The disease can progress painlessly and without showing many signs at first. Due to how subtle symptoms can be, many people do not realize they have gum disease until diagnosed by their dentist. Being aware of what the symptoms of the disease are, however, may help you spot the infection early on.

When to Be Worried

If left untreated, the infection can spread to the tissue and bone that support your teeth. This later stage of gum disease is known as periodontal disease and it cannot be treated without professional care. 

Symptoms to watch out for include: 

  • Persistent bad breath
  • Frequent bad taste in your mouth
  • Loose or shifting teeth
  • Gum abscesses (pus developing under your gums or teeth)
  • Receding gums
  • Formation of deep pockets between teeth and gums
  • Cold sensitivity 

If you notice that your gums look puffy, appear dark red, and bleed easily, you should see your dentist as soon as possible. Even if your symptoms do not seem concerning, gum disease is progressive, and if not treated quickly it can cause serious damage to your teeth and the surrounding bone and gum tissue. Your best chance for reversing the disease is getting treatment for it right away.

Last Updated: April 28, 2016

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