Periodontal, or gum, disease is caused by the buildup of bacteria and plaque.  There are varying stages of disease, and left untreated can cause breakdown of the connective tissue and bone that hold our teeth in place, and ultimately can cause tooth loss.  There are certain diseases and medications that can contribute to periodontal disease, as well as certain lifestyle factors and habits. 

Periodontal disease is often painless, although bleeding or inflammation especially when brushing and flossing may be noted.  It is important to keep your gums healthy, not only for the health and stability of your teeth, but gum disease is linked to other systemic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

Treatment of periodontal disease depends on the stage of the disease.  In the earlier stages, non-surgical periodontal treatments are quite effective.  Localized antibiotic therapy may also be combined with these treatments to further control the bacteria and allow for further healing of the tissue.