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Hardened tartar develops when residual food particles and plaque have not been removed by regular brushing and flossing. This bacterial-rich substance causes inflammation and infection in the gum tissues, which is commonly referred to as gum disease.

The technical name for gum disease is periodontal disease. It has different stages of progression. Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease. Initial symptoms of this stage include gums that bleed easily when brushing and flossing and chronic bad breath. Gingivitis often makes your gums appear red or inflamed.

The regular dental checkup at Bull City Smiles Cosmetic & Family Dentistry, Debora Bolton DDS includes a dental cleaning treatment that effectively removes tartar from your teeth. Then, with mindful and consistent improvements in your oral hygiene routine, gingivitis can often be reversed.

If gingivitis is not resolved early, it will eventually develop into the more advanced form of gum disease, which is known as periodontitis. When this happens, the irritation makes the gums recede from the base of your teeth. This forms pockets of infection near the roots of the teeth.

If periodontitis is left untreated, it will start to degrade the bone structure that anchors your teeth. In some cases, advanced periodontitis requires surgical intervention or prescription antibiotics to effectively treat and restore your gums.

If you have questions or concerns about gum disease in Durham, North Carolina, you should call Dr. Debora Bolton’s office at 919-381-5900 to schedule an appointment. Your dentist will be happy to help you!