Signs & Symptoms of Periodontal Disease

Graphic showing the stages of periodontal or gum disease.

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, affects 65 million Americans each year. Despite the large number of people who are impacted by this progressive disease, it’s actually completely preventable. Additionally, if caught in earlier stages, it’s treatable and reversible. Below, we’ll review the signs and symptoms of periodontal disease, along with ways we can help treat and prevent it at Riverstone Dental Care.

What Is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is a progressive gum disease that can significantly impact your oral and overall health. Periodontal disease has a variety of causes, including lack of oral hygiene, smoking, certain medications, genetics, pregnancy, pre existing conditions, and an imbalanced diet. But no matter the cause, the disease develops when there is an overgrowth of bacteria under the gumline. As it gets worse, the gum tissue can separate from the teeth, leading to decay and tooth loss.

Stages of Gum Disease

The three stages of gum disease are gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. Signs of gingivitis, or early stage periodontal disease, include:

  • Red, swollen, or bleeding gums

  • Receding gums

  • Darkening of gums

  • Tooth sensitivity when brushing

  • Sensitivity when exposed to hot or cold temperatures

  • Pain around the gumline

Periodontal Disease Treatment in Coeur d’Alene & Post Falls, ID

At Riverstone Dental Care, we offer special periodontal therapy to ensure that the gums and surrounding teeth are healthy. Periodontal therapy typically requires two or more visits. During these visits, we will perform scaling and root planing. This involves removing tartar and plaque buildup under the gumline and smoothing the roots of the teeth to help the gums bond to the teeth again. We also use Arestin antibiotic on gum pockets to kill and curb bacteria after each treatment to prevent it from growing.

Cleaning below the gumline can cause discomfort during treatments, so we always use local anesthetic to make sure you’re comfortable and pain-free in the dental chair. Since treatments take place over the course of several appointments, we can treat each section with diligent care and minimize any soreness you feel after treatment.

How to Prevent Periodontal Disease

Avoiding gum disease is the best way to keep your mouth healthy. Brushing and flossing thoroughly twice a day is paramount. Follow this up by maintaining a healthy, balanced diet, avoiding smoking, and visiting your dentist twice a year for cleanings and examinations.

Affordable Dental Treatments at Riverstone Dental Care

If you’d like to learn more about periodontal therapy or any of our other general, cosmetic, and restorative procedures, give our Coeur D’Alene or Post Falls offices a call. You can also schedule an appointment online by clicking the contact link. If you’re new to our offices, check out our new patient forms and financing page for more information!


Riverstone Dental Care