The gums, ligaments, and bone around the teeth form the foundation for our teeth. When they are not healthy, this jeopardizes the teeth just as a bad foundation would threaten the stability of a house. Signs of unhealthy gums and bone are:
• gums that are red, swollen and bleed easily
• persistent bad breath
• gums that are pulled away from the tooth
• loose teeth, and changes in the position or bite of the teeth
With proper treatment it may be possible to return gums to a healthy state. The treatment usually involves a deep cleaning or root planning done by the dental hygienist with local anesthetic. Sometimes local antibiotic agents called Arestin are also placed below the gums to help stop the infection. If periodontal disease gets too severe it may need to be treated with surgery.