What Can Happen If Gingivitis Is Left Untreated?
Gingivitis is a bacterial infection that is far more common than most people realize. According to Dr. Peter Domogala, a periodontist in Gurnee, Illinois, it can be incredibly difficult for a person suffering from gingivitis to get an accurate diagnosis without first making a visit to the dentist or periodontist.
Speaking from his office at the Institute of Dental Implants and Periodontics in Gurnee, the periodontist explains that gingivitis can be difficult to diagnose because there is usually no pain associated with this dangerous condition. Because there is no pain, most people are unaware if they have gingivitis. The only signs or symptoms that a person with gingivitis may notice are bleeding gums or bad breath in the morning. Unfortunately, Dr. Domogala says many people overlook these symptoms and forget to bring them to the attention of their dentist during their semi-annual appointments and exams.
The risk of leaving gingivitis untreated is great. As a leading periodontist in Gurnee, Dr. Domogala says gingivitis that is left untreated will progress and the associated infection will ultimately get into the bone. Once the infection gets into the bone, it will destroy the bone, which can end up causing people to lose teeth. In addition to losing teeth, people with gingivitis also need to worry about the infection getting into their blood streams. Researchers are just now starting to show a link between gum disease and heart disease or stroke, most likely as a result of the infection spreading into the blood stream.
Gingivitis is a condition that is almost always diagnosed by a dental professional. Dr. Domogala says dentists and hygienists make most diagnoses. Dentists and hygienists have been trained in recognizing gum disease, and most will spot the symptoms during their semi-annual visual examinations. Along with taking a visual look into the mouth, dentists will also use certain measuring instruments to gauge the size of any pockets along the gums. Dr. Domogala says dentists and hygienists will also look at radiographs or x-rays when making this type of serious diagnosis.
As a periodontist in Gurnee, Dr. Domogala has come across many people who suffered from gingivitis. The group of people most likely to suffer from this condition are uncontrolled diabetics, followed closely by smokers. People with diabetes are three times more likely to suffer from gingivitis than the general population, and smokers are three times more likely to have the condition, as well.
For more information about the perils of gingivitis, Dr. Domogala recommends contacting his office in Illinois.
Gurnee, IL 60031
*Disclaimer: The information on this website is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your healthcare provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions about treatment or care with an appropriate healthcare provider.