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Gingivitis - Symptoms

Gingivitis - Causes and Risk Factors

Causes of Gingivitis

Bacteria in plaque are the cause of gum disease. These bacteria do not cause periodontal disease when removed daily by proper brushing. However, when there is inadequate oral hygiene, bacteria accumulate to form hardened deposits called tartar. Tartar cannot be removed by brushing and requires scaling.

Plaque bacteria produce toxins that irritate the gums. When bacterial toxins accumulate over time (as happens when plaque is not removed) the body mounts a response by producing enzymes. Toxins and enzymes dissolve bone and surrounding tissue holding the teeth. Periodontal disease is a chronic disease and if untreated gets worse over time resulting finally in tooth loss.

Risk Factors of Gingivitis

  • Genetic susceptibility
  • Puberty, menopause when hormonal changes occur
  • Smoking, stress, diabetes. Poorly controlled diabetics are at risk of developing gum disease
  • Medications like anti-depressants, oral contraceptives, some heart medications
  • Compromise of immune system e.g. AIDS, leukaemia, cancer treatment

Gingivitis - Diagnosis

Gingivitis - Preparing for surgery

Gingivitis - Post-surgery care

Gingivitis - Other Information

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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