Periodontal disease is the infection and inflammation of the gums. It is caused by a thick, sticky film called plaque. Plaque can harden to become tartar, called calculus. Plaque and calculus are caused by poor oral hygiene.
Early stage of gum disease:
Bacteria found in plaque and calculus can damage the gums and cause inflammation. This is called gingivitis. Gingivitis can usually be treated successfully by removal of plaque and calculus, followed by brushing and flossing twice a day.
Advanced stage of gum disease:
Advanced stage of gum disease is called periodontitis. Periodontitis can cause extreme damage to the teeth, gums as well as the surrounding bone that supports the teeth. As gum inflammation and infection worsens, gum pockets are formed and the gums may recede from the teeth. As a result, the teeth can become loose, fall out or require extraction.
The aim of periodontal treatment is to stop or slow down the progression of gum disease.