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Periodontal disease is a common dental problem affecting people globally. It causes adverse effects that can significantly hamper your oral health and aesthetics if not treated promptly. Knowing the root cause of the disease is a key factor in designing an appropriate treatment plan. Because only symptomatic relief cannot help. 

There are several comprehensive diagnostic and treatment options offered by our dentist in St. Cloud and Sauk Rapids and their team to enhance your oral health, form, function, and aesthetics. 

An introduction to periodontal disease 

Periodontal disease, or gum disease, is a progressive destruction of the surrounding gum tissues. It initially begins as an inflammation of the gums (gingivitis) and may gradually progress to the underlying jawbone, causing permanent damage (periodontitis).   

The most prevalent causes of periodontal disease

The following are some of the possible causes of periodontal disease: 

  • Poor oral hygiene

Lack of good oral habits can cause plaque accumulation and bacterial invasion. This leads to the secretion of harmful toxins and acids, causing gingivitis or periodontitis. 

  • Tobacco use in the form of smoking

Smokers are more prone to gingival inflammation and bone loss. 

This is due to the fact that smoking leads to poor healing and recovery rates. 

  • Genetic factors

People with a genetic predisposition (if a family member suffers from it) are six times more likely to develop periodontal disease. 

  • Hormonal changes

Hormonal imbalance, as seen during puberty, pregnancy, and menopause, can wreak havoc on your oral health due to gum inflammation. 

  • Chronic stress 

Stress greatly lowers the ability of your immune system to fight off disease. 

Your body’s defense mechanism is compromised, which causes gum disease. 

  • Improper diet

A poorly balanced diet or malnutrition can also play a vital role in causing gum disease due to impaired healing ability.  

  • Underlying medical conditions

Certain health conditions such as diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, or respiratory disease can increase your risk of periodontal disease.

This is mostly attributed to poor healing and recovery rates. 

  • Medications

Drugs such as antihypertensives, oral contraceptive pills, steroids, heart medicines, and antidepressants can negatively affect the overall health of the teeth and gums. 

They facilitate bacterial colonization and cause gingival swelling.

  • Bruxism

Abnormal grinding or clenching of teeth is believed to damage the supporting tissue surrounding the teeth due to extreme forces exerted.  

Managing periodontal disease 

A periodontist can treat periodontal disease depending on the severity of the condition. 

Treatment includes:

Mild cases 

  • Oral antibiotics
  • Antimicrobial mouthwash
  • Healthy diet 
  • Scaling and root planing 
  • Pocket irrigation 

Moderate cases 

  • Tissue regeneration
  • Pocket reduction surgery
  • Management of underlying systemic disease 

Severe cases 

  • Gum grafting 
  • Bone grafting 

Remember, timely dental care can prevent the onset, progression, and recurrence of periodontal disease.