Periodontal Disease Specialist

Family Dentistry with a Gentle Touch

Ann Mudd, DMD

Dentist located in Louisville, KY

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, can affect anyone at any age. While it’s most common in adults age 65 and older, over 65 million Americans over age 30 (roughly one in two) have some form of periodontal disease, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Ann Mudd, DMD, offers gentle and personalized gum disease treatment and dentistry services for the whole family at Ann B. Mudd, DMD Family Dentistry with a Gentle Touch in Louisville, Kentucky. Call the office today or request an appointment online.

Periodontal Disease

What is periodontal disease?

Periodontal disease is caused by bacterial plaque buildup between the teeth and gums. It’s a progressive disease that starts out by causing inflammation and tenderness in the gums (gingivitis). Most people are familiar with the most telltale sign of gingivitis — bleeding gums.

Other signs and symptoms of gingivitis include:

  • Tender, swollen, or puffy gums
  • Bad breath
  • Receding gums
  • Bright red/darker than normal gums

If left untreated, gingivitis eventually develops into the more serious form of gum disease known as periodontitis. Periodontitis causes irreversible damage to the bone and soft tissue in the gums, which can ultimately result in tooth loss.

Along with the typical gingivitis symptoms, additional signs and symptoms of periodontitis include:

  • Pain/pressure when you chew
  • Signs of infection like pus between the teeth and gums
  • Loose teeth
  • Changes to your bite/how your teeth align

In the beginning, there may not be obvious symptoms, so visiting Dr. Mudd’s office for regular checkups is your best line of defense.

 

What causes periodontal disease?

Poor oral hygiene is the main gateway to gum disease, but there are other factors that can increase your risk, according to Mayo Clinic:

  • Genetics and family history
  • Tobacco use (smoking or chewing)
  • Age
  • Poor diet
  • Viral or fungal infections
  • Underlying medical conditions that weaken the immune system

 

Is periodontal disease preventable?

Yes! While some people have a higher risk than others for developing gum disease because of factors like genetics and family history, there are several steps you can take to protect yourself from periodontal disease and tooth loss.

The most important preventive steps are practicing good oral hygiene, brushing your teeth after meals, and flossing every day.

The American Dental Association (ADA) also recommends a check up and professional dental cleaning every six months.

Dr. Mudd discusses the gum disease risks with you, and she comes up with an individual prevention and treatment plan to protect your teeth and gums in the short and long term.

 

How is periodontal disease treated?

There are various treatment options available at Ann B. Mudd, DMD Family Dentistry with a Gentle Touch depending on the stage and severity of your periodontal disease.

The good news is that, when caught in time, gingivitis is typically reversible. Dr. Mudd may perform a deep-cleaning procedure known as scaling and root planing, which removes all of the plaque and bacteria buildup below the gumline.

Periodontitis treatment is usually more involved depending on the damage, but there are options available to improve your smile and restore your oral health, including:

  • Pocket reduction
  • Gum graft
  • Bone graft
  • Dental implants for tooth loss

Call the Louisville, Kentucky, office today, or schedule your appointment online to discuss your periodontal disease risk and treatment options.