When Intervention is Needed
- Posted on: Mar 30 2017
Dentistry is more about prevention than about chasing problems throughout the mouth. At least that is the ideal. That is why we hear so much about seemingly minor conditions like gingivitis. You may have heard this term often, on television commercials or even from your dentist. Unless you have been told that your gums have become inflamed, gingivitis is a problem that is perceived as “someone else’s;” it doesn’t happen to you.
Being told that you have gingivitis may feel unnerving. When you brush and floss, you do not expect anything other than the all-clear when you see your dentist. How could this have happened? To understand, we have to look more closely at the subtleties of gum health.
What is Gingivitis?
We hear the term “gingivitis,” and then we hear the term “gum disease.” Then, sometimes, we hear that the two are one and the same. Getting right down to it, gingivitis is inflammation of the gingiva or the gums. It is a precursor to full-blown gum disease, yes, but only if intervention does not occur right away. This is where the situation may get complicated.
To prevent the progression of inflammation to infection, gingivitis must be treated as early as possible. The problem is, the warning signs are easy to miss. There is typically no noticeable swelling or redness with gingivitis. The most recognizable symptom of inflammation is a little bleeding when you brush or floss. In many cases, this dental concern is noticed only during the routine exam and cleaning.
Gingivitis is mild, yes. However, because inflammation can worsen, you do not want to wait to see your Beverly Hills dentist for proper treatment.
Why Gingivitis Happens to Good People
As much as we would like to say that brushing and flossing are sufficient for the prevention of gingivitis, that would be too broad of a statement. Brushing for too short time, or skipping the floss on a particularly long day, are enough to open the door to plaque formation. Because this sticky film is invisible, it may go untouched once it has accumulated. This is why it is important that dental exams are a consistent part of your oral care routine.
We are recognized for the personal touch we give to dentistry, and we look forward to helping you love your smile. Call 310-276-4537 to schedule your visit with Dr. Frey.