Periodontal Disease

The word periodontal means “around the tooth”.  Periodontal disease attacks the gums and the bone that support the teeth.  Plaque is a sticky film of food debris, bacteria, and saliva.  If plaque is not removed, it turns into calculus (tartar).  When plaque and calculus are not removed, they begin to destroy the gums and bone.  Periodontal disease is characterized by red, swollen, and bleeding gums.

Four out of five people have periodontal disease and don’t know it!  Most people are not aware of it because the disease is usually painless in the early stages.

Not only is it the number one reason for tooth loss, research suggests that there may be a link between periodontal disease and other diseases such as, stroke, bacterial pneumonia, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and increased risk during pregnancy.  Researchers are determining if inflammation and bacteria associated with periodontal disease affects these systemic diseases and conditions.  Smoking also increases the risk of periodontal disease.

Good oral hygiene, a balanced diet, and regular dental visits can help reduce your risk of developing periodontal disease.

Signs and symptoms of periodontal disease:

  • Bleeding gums – Gums should never bleed, even when you brush vigorously or use dental floss.
  • Loose teeth – Also caused by bone loss or weakened periodontal fibers (fibers that support the tooth to the bone).
  • New spacing between teeth – Caused by bone loss.
  • Persistent bad breath – Caused by bacteria in the mouth.
  • Pus around the teeth and gums – Sign that there is an infection present.
  • Receding gums – Loss of gum around a tooth.
  • Red and puffy gums – Gums should never be red or swollen.
  • Tenderness or Discomfort – Plaque, calculus, and bacteria irritate the gums and teeth.

Testimonials.

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Testimonials

"His shots don't hurt, and I love going to the dentist!"

Alissa Dzenko Oakwood Christian Academy, 3rd Grade Chickamauga, GA

My visit to Smiles of Chattanooga was unlike anything I could have imagined. I was sitting in the waiting room for no more than five minutes when someone came out to greet me by name and started introducing me to everyone behind the front desk. After I filled out my paperwork I was taken on a tour of the building so I'd feel comfortable. I again sat for only a few minutes when I was taken back and introduced to the hygienist. I ended up staying for about six hours getting work done. I was offered blankets and pillows in case I was child. For the short periods I was alone in a room they gave me an I pad to entertain myself and while being worked on I had headphones with music. I am usually nervous when I have to see any type of doctor but everyone here was so friendly and supportive that I actually look forward to my next visit. Smiles of Chattanooga have changed my perception of what I should expect when I'm a patient. I felt like I was hanging out with good friends and left feeling better about myself. Thank you to everyone there.

-Judith Ferguson

I can't say enough kind words about how wonderful of an experience Dr. Gallien and his team provides us. Worth every penny and mile to come see, the practice far exceeds our expectations with kind words, huge smiles, genuine courtesy and appreciation. We absolutely love visiting Dr. Gallien and will continue to do so for years to come.

-Jennifer Hodnett

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