Periodontal (gum) diseases, including gingivitis and periodontitis, are serious infections that, left untreated, can lead to tooth loss. The word periodontal literally means "around the tooth." Periodontal disease is a chronic bacterial infection that affects the gums and bone supporting the teeth.
The main cause of periodontal disease is bacterial plaque, a sticky, colorless film that constantly forms on your teeth. The following factors affect the health of your gums: Smoking/Tobacco Use; Genetics (up to 30% of the population may be genetically susceptible to gum disease); Pregnancy and Puberty (due to hormonal influences); Stress (which can make it more difficult for the body to fight off infection); Medications (oral contraceptives, anti-depressants, and certain heart medicines); Clenching or Grinding Your Teeth; Diabetes; Poor Nutrition; and Other Systemic Diseases.
There are no conventional lab tests.
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