Irvine (949) 857-6757    |    Laguna Niguel (949) 495-2866

Diplomate of the American Board of Oral Implantology

Periodontal (Gum) Disease

Periodontal (gum) disease is caused by PLAQUE, a colorless film of bacteria that forms on the teeth. Plaque is most harmful when these bacteria form into colonies-that takes about 24 hours. If not removed daily, plaque mixes with sugars and starches in the diet to form acids and other by-products in the mouth. Plaque irritates the gums, causing them to become red, tender and swollen. It also causes the gums to bleed easily.

If not removed, plaque hardens to form calculus (tartar) around the necks of the teeth. Eventually, the irritants in plaque destroy the tissue that attaches the gums to the teeth. The gums pull away from the teeth and small pockets from between the teeth and gums. These pockets become filled with more plaque. Eventually, the bone supporting the teeth is destroyed. Periodontal disease is usually a slow, painless, progressive disease. Most adults with gum disease are unaware that they have it. If diagnosed early, however, the teeth can be saved.

Back To Procedures Page