Gum Disease

Deidra Kokel, DDS

Dentists located in Leesburg, VA

An oral hygiene routine that fails to control plaque can result in inflammation of your gums. Untreated inflammation causes bacteria to accumulate in your mouth that damages gum tissue and causes teeth to fall out. Deidra Kokel, DDS has more than 26 years of experience treating gum disease. Visit her practice in Leesburg, Virginia, to relieve symptoms such as swollen, painful, and bleeding gums and stop these conditions from progressing into advanced gum disease. To schedule an appointment for you or a loved one, call or use the convenient online booking tool.

Gum Disease Q & A

Deidra Kokel, DDS

What is gum disease?

The bacteria from built-up plaque causes gum disease, and the consequences range from inflammation of the gums to a loss of tissue that causes your teeth to fall out. When gum disease goes untreated, the severity gets worse with time.

What is gingivitis?

Gingivitis is the earliest stage of gum disease. If you have gingivitis, the gums are swollen, inflamed, and may bleed when brushing your teeth, but you’re not at any immediate risk of losing tissue or teeth.

When gingivitis progresses, it may turn into periodontitis, a more serious form of gum infection that damages the tissue and bones supporting your teeth. In addition to the risk of tooth loss, periodontitis causes more severe pain, swelling, and bleeding than gingivitis.  

How is gum disease diagnosed?

When you visit Dr. Kokel, she performs a thorough examination to look for one or more of the following signs of gum disease:

  • Constant bad breath
  • Gums that bleed from brushing or flossing
  • Swollen gums
  • Receding gums
  • Sensitive teeth
  • Changes in teeth alignment

If Dr. Kokel discovers you have gum disease, she may ask additional questions about your symptoms, examine sensitive teeth, and take X-rays to determine the progression.

What can I do to prevent gum disease?

Gum disease can be preventable and reversible in its early stages if you practice good oral hygiene (e.g., using traditional or water flossing techniques) and reduce your intake of foods and beverages that cause bacteria to accumulate, including starches, sugars, and carbonated drinks.

If you receive a gingivitis diagnosis, Dr. Kokel may recommend scheduling periodontal cleaning appointments up to four times a year. These regular appointments allow Dr. Kokel to monitor your gum health and get rid of plaque and tartar before they have a chance to build up.

A diagnosis of periodontitis may require more advanced treatment from a periodontist or gum specialist. Dr. Kokel refers you to a periodontist if necessary and coordinates with the specialist to ensure managing your care between two dentists as easy as possible.

To schedule a periodontal checkup with Deidra Kokel, DDS, call the office or click the online scheduling tool.