Is Periodontal Disease Contagious?

groupYour mouth is filled with bacteria. These bacteria form a sticky substance known as plaque. Good oral hygiene – brushing, flossing, rinsing – can help eliminate this plaque. However, without good dental care, plaque may harden and turn into tartar. When that happens, only your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist can remove it.

Periodontal Disease is an Infection

Untreated plaque eventually can advance into gum disease (gingivitis and periodontitis). You may not have given it much thought, however, as with other diseases periodontal disease is an infection; an infection that can destroy the bones, gums, and tissue that hold and protect your teeth.

While gum disease is an “inflammatory reaction” to the bacteria in your mouth, most dental experts believe it is not contagious. However, considering that the bacteria that causes the disease lives in your saliva, you may want to avoid mouth-to-mouth contact with any person who has periodontal disease. Additionally, your Century City cosmetic dentist recommends you refer them to your dentist.

Periodontal Disease Linked to Other Health Factors

Nearly half of all U.S. adults over 30 have chronic periodontal disease, according to the American Dental Association. Along with causing damage to your teeth, gums, and jawbone, studies suggest the inflammation caused by periodontal disease is linked to other systematic illnesses such as stroke, heart disease, and diabetes. Particularly, researchers suggest that periodontitis has a negative effect on blood flow and blood sugar levels.

Conversely, these illnesses along with other factors such as tobacco use, genetics, and medication may increase your risk of developing gingivitis and periodontal disease. If you have any of these risk factors, be sure to discuss them with your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist.

Managing Periodontal Disease 

Naturally, the best way to manage gum disease is through good oral hygiene. By brushing and flossing daily, and visiting your Century City cosmetic dentist on a regular basis, you can virtually eliminate gum disease.

However, equally important is to know the warning signs of gum disease. Keep an eye on your gums. If they become red, swollen, painful, and start to bleed, see your dentist as soon as possible. Your dentist can make a visual assessment to determine the extent of the problem. From there he may recommend several treatments including scaling and root planing. These methods of deep cleaning will remove the tartar and germs from below the gum line, where it is most difficult to reach by tooth brushing and flossing alone.

Periodontal disease doesn’t have to happen to you. If you have any questions about the care of your mouth, teeth, and gums or are concerned about gum disease, speak with your Beverly Hills cosmetic dentist.