You are probably familiar with the dangers of gum disease. It can ruin your smile and increase the likelihood that you will develop a systemic illness, like heart disease, stroke, or diabetes.  But could you recognize the symptoms? What if your gums are sore or you notice your gums bleed when you brush or floss? Dr. Leigh Kent recommends that her patients schedule a visit at the first sign of bleeding gums in Birmingham, AL. Bleeding gums, in fact, the first symptom of a periodontal infection.

How Well Do You Know Gum Disease Symptoms?

When the bacteria in your mouth infect your gums, the periodontal tissue becomes tender and inflamed. This is part of your body’s immune response. As the bacteria begin to grow and flourish, they damage the connective tissue and bone that support your teeth. Symptoms typically include:

  • Bleeding gums
  • Redness and swelling of gums
  • Bad breath
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Gum recession 
  • Loose or shifting teeth 
  • Bone loss 
  • Tooth loss

For some, there may be no pain or discomfort but there may still be bleeding gumsBleeding gums are never normal and are always a sign that something is wrong. Knowing this is essential because if your periodontal infection is detected and treated in the early stages of gum disease, any damage is reversible. Treatments are also more conservative, including antibiotic therapy, deep cleanings, or laser surgery.

When bleeding gums are ignored for a long time, however, the damage to your smile may require more treatments to restore both oral health and aesthetics:
- Receding gums may require a gum graft in order to cover an exposed tooth root.
- Bone loss may necessitate a bone graft to maintain the integrity of your facial structure.
- Tooth loss will need to be corrected with a dental bridge or dental implants.

Do you suffer from bleeding gums in Birmingham, AL? Contact our office and schedule your consultation with Dr. Leigh Kent. Dr. Kent would be happy to evaluate your oral health and help you to decide which gum disease treatment is right for you.