When To Call a Doctor
Call a dentist if you have symptoms of gum disease, such as:
- Loose teeth or teeth that have shifted, creating spaces between your teeth.
- Pus coming from your gums.
- Gums that have pulled away or receded from your teeth.
- Bad breath that doesn't go away when you brush and floss.
- Red, swollen, or tender gums.
- Gums that bleed easily when brushed.
See your dentist regularly. If you have a history of dental problems, you may need to go two times a year. If you haven't gone to the dentist in the last year, make an appointment as soon as possible. A dental hygienist can remove Reference plaque Opens New Window and scrape hard mineral deposits (tartar) from around your gum line. Regular checkups and cleanings will help you reverse and prevent further gum disease.
If you have gum disease, see your dentist right away. Waiting to have it treated will allow it to get worse and spread.
Who to see
If your gum disease is severe, the dentist may refer you to a specialist, such as:
- A periodontist. A periodontist is a dentist with 2 to 3 years of extra training in diagnosing and treating gum problems.
- An Reference oral or maxillofacial surgeon Opens New Window who specializes in mouth surgery.
To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Reference Making the Most of Your Appointment.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference August 5, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Steven K. Patterson, BS, DDS, MPH - Dentistry