You are not alone if diagnosed with periodontal (gum) disease. Many people worldwide are currently infected with this form of the disease. Periodontal diseases can vary from minor gum inflammation to severe illness that causes serious damage to the soft tissue and the bones that support the teeth.

But what exactly is periodontitis? Periodontitis is a severe form of gum disease. It is a bacterial illness that begins by causing swelling in the gums and soft tissues surrounding your teeth. If it is not treated, it eats away the bone which supports the teeth, causing mobility or tooth loss.

Who is affected by periodontitis?

In people under the age of 30, periodontitis is relatively rare. As you become older, the likelihood increases. Yet, it can impact anyone who needs better oral hygiene, such as those who don't consistently clean and floss their teeth. Moreover, some persons are genetically predisposed to periodontitis more than others. You're more likely to get gum disease if your biological grandparents or parents have a history of having it.

What are the signs of periodontitis?

Depending on the disease's stage, the symptoms typically include:

  • Gums become reddish or purple
  • Gums will become swollen
  • Gums will bleed when you brush or floss your teeth
  • Soft gums
  • Bad breath
  • Plaque or tartar accumulation on your teeth
  • Discomfort while chewing
  • Tooth decay
  • Changes in your tooth position or loose teeth

What is the cause of periodontitis?

Several different species of bacteria are often present in the mouths of healthy individuals. Many of these bacteria are entirely harmless. Bacteria accumulate on your teeth when you don't correctly brush them daily.

Poor dental hygiene is frequently the root cause of periodontitis. The following occurs when you neglect to brush your teeth as well as clean the areas of your mouth that are difficult to access:

  • The dental plaque will develop due to the multiplying bacteria in your mouth.
  • If the plaque is not removed by brushing, the bacteria eventually start to accumulate minerals inside the plaque.
  • Tartar, a mineral buildup, will promote further bacterial development at the tooth's root.
  • Gum inflammation results from your body's immunological response to this bacterial development.
  • A periodontal pocket or gap could develop between the gum and the root of a tooth due to the gum's gradual loss of attachment to the tooth's root.
  • In the pocket, dangerous anaerobic bacteria settle down and grow, producing toxins that can harm the supporting bone structures, gums, and teeth.

Your chance of contracting periodontitis may also be affected by additional factors, such as:

  • The most significant factor is smoking, which makes your body less capable of fighting infection.
  • Periodontitis is one infection that is more likely to affect people with diabetes.
  • Your genetic makeup and family history may make you more vulnerable to gum disease.
  • The risk of getting periodontitis can be increased by hormonal changes in women and those who were born with a feminine gender preference, such as pregnancy or the use of birth control pills.
  • Illnesses that affect your immune system, such as leukemia or HIV.
  • Medicines that lessen saliva production in the mouth.
  • Inadequate nutrition, especially a lack of vitamin C.

How is periodontal disease treated?

A periodontist or even a Shreveport dentist could administer the treatment. Dentists who focus on gum disease are known as periodontists. During your therapy, a dental hygienist could collaborate with your Shreveport dentist or periodontist.

The purpose of treatment is to altogether remove the plaque and tartar from the pockets around the teeth while avoiding harm to the bone and gums surrounding them. The highest chance for treatment success is when you also practice oral hygiene daily and give up smoking.

Nonsurgical Periodontitis Treatment Options

Less invasive methods, such as the following, may be used to treat periodontitis if it is not advanced:

  • Scaling - Tartar and germs from the tooth surfaces and underneath the gum line are removed during scaling. A laser or an ultrasonic device may be used, along with other tools.
  • Root Planning - The root surfaces are buffed by root planning. This will lessen the chance of germs and tartar accumulating further. Also, it aids in re-attaching the gums to the teeth.
  • Antibiotics - Antibiotics can help manage bacterial illness when used topically or orally. Antibiotic mouthwashes and putting antibiotic-containing gel into gum pockets are examples of topical antibiotics. Oral antibiotics may occasionally be required to eradicate bacteria that cause illnesses.

Periodontitis Surgical Procedures

If your periodontitis is mild to severe, surgery will probably be necessary. Surgical procedures comprise:

Flap Surgery: Also known as pocket reduction surgery. Your periodontist in Shreveport LA skillfully separates the tissue by making incisions in your gums. This allows for more efficient scaling and root planing by exposing the tooth roots. Periodontitis frequently results in bone loss. Thus, before the gum tissue is sewn back into place, the underlying bone may need to be remodeled. Cleaning the spaces around the teeth and maintaining healthy gum tissue is more straightforward once you've recovered.

Dental Bone Grafts: The periodontist or dentist in Shreveport may suggest a bone graft if you have experienced significant bone loss. In the places where you've lost bone tissue, they'll apply bone-grafting material during this treatment. These materials may be made of synthetic materials, donated bone, or your bone. The graft acts as a framework for the development of new bone. The risk of future illness and tooth loss will be decreased.

Gum Grafts: Periodontitis could cause the gum tissue around your teeth to tear away. Gum recession exposes the roots of your teeth, giving the impression that they are longer. Your dentist in Shreveport or periodontist may suggest a gum graft to restore missing tissue surrounding your teeth. They will sew a tissue transplant into place around the afflicted teeth during this procedure. They may get the tissue from your mouth's roof, or they could buy it from a registered bone and tissue bank. Gum graft procedure conceals exposed tooth roots, enhances the appearance of your smile, and lowers the chance of additional recession.

Guided Tissue Regeneration: a unique biocompatible membrane is positioned between the tooth and the bone that already supports it by your dentist or periodontist. This membrane promotes the growth of new bone by preventing invasive tissue from returning to the location.

Tissue-Stimulating Proteins: One such strategy is to treat an infected tooth root with a unique gel. The creation of healthy bone and tissue is sped up by this gel, which contains the very same proteins present in enamel-forming dental enamel.


While periodontitis cannot be cured, it is manageable with the right maintenance and care. Keeping your teeth clean on a regular basis at intervals suggested by your dentist in Shreveport is part of this. Periodontitis can be avoided most effectively by maintaining a healthy oral hygiene routine at home in between dental appointments and by scheduling routine dental cleanings.

Periodontitis-prone individuals could need cleanings more frequently than those who are healthy. To keep your oral health at its best, ask your dentist how frequently you ought to have your teeth cleaned.