Periodontology is the branch of dentistry that examines the structure of the soft (periodontal ligament, gingival) and hard tissues (bone, cementum) surrounding the teeth, the diseases that occur in these tissues, and the treatment of these diseases. The teeth are not directly attached to the bone in which they are located, called the alveolar prominence. Between the teeth and the bone is a tissue called the periodontal ligament, which is made up of fibers. The periodontal ligament allows the force on the teeth to be transmitted to the jawbone by softening it. These structures are covered with gingiva. These tissues around the tooth are called periodontal tissues and form the scope of periodontology.
Healthy Gums and Periodontal Tissues
Healthy gums are pale pink in color, dull, and firm in consistency. The gingiva wraps around the tooth like a collar in the neck area and ends as a knife-edge at the junction with the tooth. There is a gap of approximately 1-1.5 mm between the tooth and the gingiva. This gap is called the gingival groove. Periodontal diseases take their source from this gingival groove. Healthy gums do not bleed while brushing
Causes of Gum Diseases
The main cause of the gingival disease is a sticky transparent layer, which is firmly attached to the tooth called bacterial plaque. You can notice plaque by scraping your teeth with your fingernail. One milligram of plaque contains between 200 and 500 million bacteria. In addition, the following factors also affect your gum health.
- SMOKING: As we all know, smoking causes many important diseases such as cancer, lung and heart diseases. Apart from all these, it is also very harmful to the oral mucosa and gums. It causes softening of the gums and the development of gum diseases.
- GENETIC FACTORS: According to studies, there is a 30% genetic predisposition. In addition, with poor oral care, the probability of developing gum disease increases 6 times. If there is a person with a gum problem in the family, you should definitely be examined by a gum specialist.
- HORMONAL CHANGES: During periods of intense hormonal changes such as pregnancy, puberty, menopause, and menstruation, you should pay special attention to your oral hygiene. Your gums are more sensitive during these periods. The susceptibility to gum disease increases.
- STRESS: In addition to being one of the causes of many diseases such as hypertension and cancer, it is also a risk factor for gum diseases. Studies have shown that stress, including periodontal diseases, makes it harder for the body to fight infection.
- MEDICATION USE: Birth control pills, anti-depressants, and heart medications affect your oral health. Therefore, if you are using one of these drugs, please warn your dentist and pay special attention to your oral hygiene.
- Squeezing or grinding teeth: They cause periodontal tissue destruction by causing a decrease in the force between the tooth and gingiva. One of the reasons for receding gums is clenching teeth. This squeezing must be stopped by attaching a night plate.
- DIABETES – DIABETES: Diabetes patients are in the high-risk group in terms of periodontal (gum) infection. They should definitely pay attention to their oral hygiene by having their routine gingival checks performed by a gingival specialist (periodontologist).
- BAD NUTRITION: It causes the body’s immune (immune) system to weaken and accordingly, it becomes difficult to fight infections, including gum infections.
- POORLY MADE CIRCLE BRIDGES AND FILLINGS: Fillings, crowns, and bridges that press on the gums and overflow cause problems in the gums.
The use of mouthwash can never replace tooth brushing or interface cleaning. The use of mouthwash supports applications such as tooth brushing and interface care and increases its effectiveness. For this reason, you can use mouthwash, but it would not be correct to say that you should definitely use it. If it is recommended by your doctor after operations or in some diseases and treatments, you should definitely follow this recommendation.
It is important that the brush used when brushing teeth is suitable for our teeth and gums. Crowded teeth and straight teeth cannot always be cleaned with the same brush. Or there are some brushes that can be used in cases of sensitivity, gingival recession, or wisdom teeth in different positions. These brush recommendations should be determined and notified to you by the gum doctor.
This situation can be corrected. However, intraoral examination and evaluation with x-rays are necessary. Generally, with some gingival operations, the gingiva can be adjusted so that it is not visible. In very advanced cases, the situation can be alleviated with some camouflage treatments. Along with these procedures, some operations (lamina, empress, zirconia crowns) may be required on the surfaces of the teeth.