Your teeth are very durable, but that doesn’t mean they cannot get hurt. From tooth decay to sports injuries, you need to visit a dentist to correct any damage as soon as possible. Because you need to keep chewing every day, such problems will likely get bigger over time.

However, you also have to worry about your gums. They play a vital role in your smile, and when they get irritated by plaque (or even infected with the same bacteria behind tooth decay), your entire smile is in jeopardy. This is called gum disease.

But how do you know if you have this problem? First, check to see if you have any of the gum disease symptoms listed below. Then call Davenport Dental Group at 956-242-6745 (Junction Drive) or 956-517-2695 (Winfield) for an appointment. You can get treatment for gum disease, but it’s easier to do when the problem is caught early enough.

Check For These Problems

Do you or someone in your family have any of these issues?

Recurring bad breath: As gum disease damages your gum tissues, they tend to emit an unpleasant odor. This is halitosis or chronic bad breath. If your breath smells odd a lot of the time (and not just after eating something like garlic), then you might have gum disease.

Tender and/or swollen gums: Plaque is a hard substance left behind on your teeth by harmful bacteria. This can get under your gums, making them tender to the touch. They can also swell as they try to fight off the infection.

Loose teeth: Your gums have roots that extend into your jawbone, but they are also held in place partially by your gums. When you have gum disease, the tissues tend to pull away from teeth. This can leave you with some that feel a bit loose.

Discolored gums: Healthy gums should have that pink-ish color to them. When you have gum disease, this can turn into red or even dark as the disease affects the gum tissues.

Receding gum line: As with loose teeth, this is when your gum tissues are under attack by harmful bacteria and being to pull away from the teeth. If you still do not have any loose teeth, your gum line can move farther away, making your teeth look a little bit longer than they should.

Bleeding after brushing or flossing: Gums that are irritated by plaque (or infected by bacteria) become easy to cut. Even if you brush and floss stronger than you should, seeing blood in the sink is a bad sign.

Get Gum Disease Treatment

If you have one or more of these signs, do not panic! You can get gum disease treatment to help correct the situation and save your smile. For example, you can have a special procedure called scaling and root planing. This is when the gums are numbed so your dentist can remove plaque from under the gums. This removes some of the harmful bacteria, but it also helps your gum tissues by removing what’s irritating them.

But the best treatment here is visiting with our dentists every six months. Not only can this help spot gum disease in its earliest form, regular cleanings can remove the plaque irritating your gums and creating these problems.

Call either of our Laredo, TX offices today — Junction Drive (956-242-6745) or Winfield (956-517-2695) — and make a new appointment so our dentists can check for any gum disease symptoms.