What is Gingivitis?
Gingivitis means inflammation of the gums, or gingiva. It commonly occurs because a film of plaque, or bacteria, accumulates on the teeth.
Signs of gingivitis include red and puffy gums, that bleed easily when the person brushes their teeth.Gingivitis often resolves with good oral hygiene, such as longer and more frequent brushing, and flossing. In addition, an antiseptic mouthwash may help.
In mild cases of gingivitis, patients may not even know they have it, because symptoms are mild. However, the condition should be taken seriously and addressed immediately.
The most common cause of gingivitis is the accumulation of bacterial plaque between and around the teeth. The plaque triggers an immune response, which, in turn, can eventually lead to the destruction of gingival, or gum, tissue. It may also, eventually, lead to further complications, including the loss of teeth.
If diagnosis happens early, and if treatment is prompt and proper, gingivitis can be successfully reversed.
Treatment involves care by a dental professional, and follow-up procedures carried out by the patient at home.