Chronic Bad Breath? It Could Be a Sign of Periodontal Disease

Research suggests that oral hygiene is linked to 80% of bad breath. We’ve all encountered someone with bad breath and no one likes to experience it. Truth is, everyone has had bad breath before. The good thing is, it can be fixed. 

Occasional bad breath may be temporary and not a sign of a problem. Chronic bad breath, however, could be a sign of periodontal disease, which affects your gums and the structures surrounding your teeth. Hyun S. Bang and her team treat periodontal disease to help patients improve their oral health and hygiene and confidence.

Understanding periodontal disease

Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, happens when bacteria in plaque adn tartar accumulate on your gums and create an infection. It can occur in children or adults and is generally the result of improper oral hygiene. Gum disease has four different stages, and if left untreated, it can result in damaged teeth and even tooth loss. 

Gingivitis 

The first stage of gum disease is called gingivitis and describes the inflammation of your gums. You may notice sensitivity or bleeding gums from brushing your teeth. Gingivitis can be reversed by improving oral hygiene.

Early periodontitis

If gingivitis continues to progress, early gum disease, or periodontitis, will occur. This describes the process in which the infection starts to pull your teeth away from the gums. Small pockets will sit between the gums and teeth, trapping bacteria easily. You may notice your gum tissue starting to recede.

Moderate periodontitis

Moderate gum disease is characterized by receding gums and an increased amount of pain and blood. The infection will start to eat away at your bones, resulting in weaker oral support and loose teeth. At this point, gum disease can affect other parts of your body and lead to inflammation or swelling. 

Advanced periodontitis

The last and most severe stage is advanced gum disease. In this stage, your gums and oral tissues will start to deteriorate and eating will be painful. You are very likely to lose teeth.

Signs of gum disease

Many people have periodontal disease without even knowing it. Sometimes it can be so hard to see that only your dentist will notice, especially early on. Although chronic bad breath is one of the first signs of periodontal disease, here are some other symptoms to look for:

Treatment options

If you’ve been diagnosed with periodontal disease, Hyun S. Bang, DDS can provide the best treatment option to improve your oral health. Sometimes a deep cleaning is all you’ll need if gum disease was caught in its earliest stage.

Scaling is a treatment option that involves using a scraping tool to remove plaque around and below your gum line. Dr. Bang may need to combine scaling with a root planing, which describes smoothing your gums to help them better adhere to your teeth. She may also prescribe medications or oral rinses to help eliminate bacteria and fight infection.

Prevention is key

The best way to stop periodontal disease is by prevention. This involves brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing your teeth daily. Although it may be easy to rush through oral hygiene, it is best to spend at least two minutes brushing and then gargle with mouthwash to ensure cleanliness. 

Remember to get regular dental exams every 6-12 months. Along with at-home oral hygiene, that’s the best way to prevent periodontal disease and other oral health conditions. Use the online scheduler or call the practice directly at 415-213-2599 to book a dental cleaning today.

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