Are Gum Disease and Gingivitis the Same Thing?
There are different stages of gum disease, with each stage being based on the severity of the infection. Because there are different stages of gum disease, it can be difficult to differentiate between each one. When trying to determine what stage the infection is at, it is best to begin with a visit with a general dentist.
Gum disease vs. gingivitis
Outlined below are overviews of gum disease and gingivitis. While the two do tend to overlap, there are a few key differences that are important to be aware of.
What is gum disease?
Gum disease is a serious infection in the gums that causes damage to the soft tissues. If gum disease goes untreated, patients may also experience damage to their teeth, such as tooth decay. Typically, the cause of gum disease is genetics, lack of oral hygiene or skipping routine cleanings with a dentist.
Dentistis often recommend oral rinses, as well as in-depth cleaning procedures that go beneath the gums. However, if the gums have begun to recede or if there is a shift in the teeth, then more invasive procedures may be required, such as soft tissue transplants.
What is gingivitis?
Gingivitis is typically the beginning stage of gum disease. Medically speaking, gingivitis refers to inflamed gums. When a patient suffers from gingivitis, they are likely to experience inflammation, which can appear as red, puffy or swollen gums. Typically, there is tenderness as well.
Gingivitis often occurs when there is a lack of oral hygiene or when the patient skips routine cleanings with their dentist. Often, it can be treated through a procedure known as scaling and root planing, which is just a more in-depth cleaning of the soft and hard tissues within the mouth.
Similarities and differences
Gingivitis is a form of gum disease, which means that there are symptoms that overlap. When a patient experiences overall gum disease, it is likely that the infection is severe. However, if the gums are just inflamed, then it is likely that the patient only has gingivitis. The main difference is that gingivitis is such an early form of gum disease, patients will not likely experience bleeding or pain. Additionally, the teeth will not be affected, and the gums are not likely to recede.
However, one thing that remains constant for both gingivitis and gum disease is that the patient will experience inflammation. Inflamed gums are the number-one sign that an infection is present, especially as the disease progresses.
Learn more today!
Both gum disease and gingivitis can lead to serious complications if treatment does not take place. Working with a general dentist is a good place to start when experiencing a gum infection. Reach out today to learn more or to get started! Our team is here to help.
Request an appointment here: https://www.agawamdentalarts.com or call Agawam Dental Arts at (413) 362-7815 for an appointment in our Feeding Hills office.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Gum Disease in Feeding Hills, MA.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost half of the United States population has some form of gum disease by the time they reach the age of 30. The risk increases by age 65, with over 70% of Americans experiencing this issue later in life. While gum disease is very treatable, it…
Avoiding gum disease at all costs is essential, as once someone is diagnosed with this dental-related disease, it means that they are in need of additional dental treatment to restore their good oral health. Even though gingivitis is the mildest form of gum disease, it can still cause harm to one’s overall good oral health.Thinking…
Gum disease is a progressive condition that is caused by bacteria in the mouth getting into gum tissues. Your immune system responds to this invasion by sending off antibodies to fight off the invaders. The ensuing battle leads to inflammation and damage to the structures that support teeth.The first stage of gum disease is called…
Understanding that laser dentistry is a treatment option for addressing cavities means that dental patients have choices. While not all dental professionals offer laser treatment, many now do as they want to offer their patients treatments that use advanced dental technologies. According to WebMD, lasers may preserve more healthy tooth tissue during cavity treatment.Thinking laser…