A patient came to see us having not been to se a dentist for 2 years. He had a previous bad experience where the anaesthetic did not work properly and found his treatment very painful. He had read that we provide pain-free dentistry and was keen to get his mouth in good shape as his teeth were breaking at the back, but surprisingly he was in no pain.
On discussions with him, he was keen to get his mouth healthy and retain the rest of his teeth and possibly think about filling the gaps where he had previously lost his teeth. He also mentioned that his gums did bleed occasionally.
On assessing his dental health he had multiple teeth that were decaying and as a result had huge holes which were not restorable. He also had very red gums and they bled easily when checking their health. As a general rule gums should be pink, tight and not bleed when you brush or floss. The tartar build up was extensive and the plaque build was also heavy in his mouth. The gums were in such poor condition that the bone around the teeth were being destroyed which resulted in gum (periodontal) pockets. Moderate to severe gum disease can cause bad breath as well as heart disease. People who are diabetic, smokers, immunocompromised and have a bad diet are more at risk of gum disease.
Gum disease can also be silent with no visible symptoms. That’s why it is so important to regularly see your dentist and hygienist so that they can screen you and ensure your mouth stays healthy.