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All About Gum Disease

Periodontal (gum) diseases, including gingivitis and periodontitis, are serious infections that, left untreated, can lead to tooth loss. Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gums and bone supporting the teeth.

Types of Periodontal Disease

There are many forms of periodontal disease. The most common ones include the following.

  • Gingivitis
    Gingivitis is the mildest form of periodontal disease. It causes the gums to become red, swollen, and bleed easily. There is usually little or no discomfort at this stage. Gingivitis is reversible with professional treatment and good at home oral care.
  • Aggressive Periodontitis
    A form of periodontitis that occurs in patients who are otherwise clinically healthy. Common features include rapid attachment loss and bone destruction and familial aggregation.
  • Chronic Periodontitis
    A form of periodontal disease resulting in inflammation within the supporting tissues of the teeth, progressive attachment and bone loss and is characterized by pocket formation and/or recession of the gingiva. It is recognized as the most frequently occurring form of periodontitis. It is prevalent in adults, but can occur at any age. Progression of attachment loss usually occurs slowly, but periods of rapid progression can occur.
  • Periodontitis as a Manifestation of Systemic Diseases
    Periodontititis, often with onset at a young age, associated with one of several systemic diseases, such as diabetes.