Left untreated, it can lead to more significant issues, affecting the rest of your mouth and even your body.
What Happens if Gum Disease is Untreated?Left untreated, bacteria spreads. Your gums can begin to recede and you are more at risk for tooth decay. Bacteria can get into the roots of your teeth and into your jawbone, compromising its strength and leading to tooth loss. From your bone, the bacteria can spread into the bloodstream and travel to other parts of your body, including your heart, your brain and your lungs.
Affect on Breath
As your gums pull away from your teeth, spaces are opened up that allow food to fall below the gum line and become trapped. This food is impossible to reach with brushing and flossing. As it rots, it emits an odor. Bacteria feasting upon the lost food also causes fermentation. No amount of brushing can get rid of the foul scent.
Damage to Lungs
Gum disease not only affects your breath, but it can also affect your breathing, leading to such respiratory issues as COPD, pneumonia and bronchitis. Studies have shown that individuals who suffer from these respiratory illnesses typically have poorer oral hygiene than those without.
The lungs become infected because toxic bacteria that hides in gum pockets is inhaled. The moist environment in your lungs provides a healthy breeding ground for these bacteria to continue to grow.
Gum disease can be treated. Your dentist will diagnose the severity and begin a treatment program. This can include scaling, root planing and even antibiotics. Then treatment should continue at home, with regular brushing, flossing and dental visits. If treated early enough, these other health issues can be avoided.
Don't let gum disease spread to affect your lungs, or any other part of your body. If you suspect that you may be suffering from gum disease, contact our office right away.