Gingivitis vs. Periodontitis: Are They the Same?

blue-eyesGingivitis and periodontitis are often used interchangeably. However, it should be noted that they mean two entirely different things in terms of describing gum disease. Periodontitis is more aggressive than gingivitis because it is most likely to result in tooth loss.

Gingivitis refers to inflamed gums and is often the result of too much plaque buildup. Bleeding, particularly during brushing, is typically the first sign of gingivitis. The symptoms of gingivitis may be masked among smokers as the gums can take a dark color that makes the redness and swelling less obvious. Untreated gingivitis can potentially progress to periodontitis.

Periodontitis may also be present with red, swollen gums. The appearance of mouth sores, persistent sour taste in the mouth, and gum pain may accompany the inflammation of gums in periodontitis. You can differentiate gingivitis from periodontitis through the following:

  • Periodontitis is more common among adults and rarely occurs in teenagers.
  • Pain while chewing is another sign that gingivitis has progressed to periodontitis.
  • In gingivitis, the teeth are still intact and firmly in place while receding gums could indicate periodontitis. Gum recession can expose the tooth roots and make the teeth appear taller or longer.
  • Bad breath may persist in periodontitis even after brushing and flossing.

Let us help you prevent or treat gum disease! Get in touch with Peters Dental Associates by calling 281-486-8061 to schedule an appointment today.

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