The Stages of Gum Disease


The first stage of gum disease is gingivitis, which is a mild inflammation of the gums caused by plaque buildup around the teeth. Symptoms of gingivitis include red, sometimes swollen gums, and tender gums that bleed easily when brushing or flossing. However, gingivitis can often be reversed with proper oral hygiene practices such as brushing twice daily, flossing daily, and regular dental cleanings.
If you have noticed signs of gingivitis, schedule an appointment with Dr. Joseph Thomas as soon as possible. With early intervention, gingivitis can be easily treated before it progresses to more severe stages of gum disease.

Early Periodontitis

If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to early periodontitis, which is characterized by a more significant infection that begins to affect healthy gums and the bone supporting the teeth. Symptoms of early periodontitis include receding gums, bad breath, and increased sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures. At this stage, the bacteria have begun to penetrate the deeper layers of gum tissue and bone, causing irreversible damage.

To treat early periodontitis, Dr. Thomas may recommend scaling and root planing, which involves removing plaque and tartar buildup from beneath the gum line and smoothing the tooth root surfaces.

Moderate Periodontitis

Moderate periodontitis is the third stage of gum disease, characterized by significant bone loss loose teeth, and gum recession. At this stage, teeth may become loose, and there may be noticeable gaps between the teeth and gum tissues. In addition to the symptoms of early periodontitis, patients with moderate periodontitis may experience pain and discomfort while chewing.

Treatment for moderate periodontitis typically involves a combination of scaling and root planing, antibiotic therapy, and possible surgical intervention. Dr. Thomas may recommend a bone graft or guided tissue regeneration procedure to help regenerate lost bone and gum tissue.

Advanced Periodontitis

The final stage of gum disease is advanced periodontitis, which is characterized by severe bone loss, tooth loss, and tooth mobility. At this stage, teeth may need to be extracted, and patients may require extensive reconstructive procedures to restore their oral health.
Symptoms of advanced periodontitis include severe pain, swelling, and pus discharge from the gums. Treatment options may include periodontal surgery, bone grafts, and dental implants.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are You at Risk for Gum Disease? Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Thomas

If you’re experiencing symptoms of gum disease or want to learn more about how to prevent it, schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas in Billings, MT today. Our experienced team can provide a comprehensive examination and create a personalized treatment plan tailored to your individual needs.
At Dr. Thomas' practice, we take pride in our patient-centric approach to dentistry. What truly sets us apart is our unwavering commitment to personalized care. Every treatment plan is tailored to meet the unique needs and preferences of each individual. We believe that exceptional oral health is the cornerstone of a fulfilling life, and that's exactly what we deliver.
Don't let periodontal disease go untreated and risk the potential for serious health complications. New patients can contact us at (406) 298-4485. If you are a returning patient, feel free to call us at (406) 256-5165 to schedule an appointment and take the first step toward achieving optimal oral health.