Dentistry And Periodontal Disease

686 Words3 Pages
Periodontal diseases are infections of the structures around the teeth. These structures include the gums, the root, the periodontal ligament and the alveolar bone. The earliest stage of periodontal disease is called “gingivitis”. Gingivitis is an infection that affects the gums. In more severe forms of the disease, all of the supporting tissues are involved (Aetna Inc., 2013). As a dental assistant, it is easy for me to notice if a person’s gums are getting swollen and red. In addition, tooth decay generally results from the action of bacteria that normally inhabit your mouth. Bacteria adhering to the surfaces of the teeth produce a sticky matrix that traps food particles and creates deposits known as dental plaque. Inflammation of the gingivae results if the gingival attachment at the neck of a tooth weakens (Martini, Ober, Bartholomew, & Nath, 2013, p. 531). Periodontal Disease occurs when dental plaque forms between the gums and teeth. It is the most common cause for losing teeth (Martini, Ober, Bartholomew, & Nath, 2013, p. 552). Dentistry and periodontal efforts date back to prehistoric and ancient Egyptian times. The first known dentist was from Egypt; his name was Hesi-Re. In America, Grace Rogers Spalding was the first person to specialize in periodontal disease and periodontics, although Dr. D. Smith is considered the "father of oral prophylaxis" (Sheehan, 2010).
The word periodontal means around the tooth. Periodontal diseases are serious bacterial infections and gum disease that destroy the surrounding tissues of the mouth. If gums inflammation is left untreated, the disease will continue. If it continues, the underlying bone around the teeth will dissolve and will no longer be able to hold the teeth in place (Universi...

... middle of paper ...

...aque buildup are often the culprits. In fact, bacterial plaque buildup is the leading cause of gum disease. Other factors that contribute to gum disease include: genetics, poor oral hygiene, food stuck in the gums (may be due to a malocclusion), mouth breathing (may lead to severe drying of the gums and teeth in the front of the mouth), diet low in nutrients and/or a vitamin C deficiency, smoking / the use of smokeless tobacco, autoimmune or systemic diseases, diabetes, hormonal changes in the body, bruxism (repeated involuntary clenching or grinding of the teeth), certain medications (some medications can cause an overgrowth of the gums that can lead to periodontal disease). In my opinion, substance use has a notable effect in users’ teeth and gums. It is incredible how illegal drugs not only affect an individual’s physical and mental health, but their teeth also.

More about Dentistry And Periodontal Disease

Open Document