Types of Gum Disease

Types of Gum Disease

April 25, 2019

The 2 types of diseases that can affect the gums are commonly referred to as gum disease or periodontal disease.

  • Gingivitis
  • Periodontitis

The inflammation or infection that destroys the tissues which support the teeth including the gums and periodontal ligaments is periodontal diseases. They are common in adults and can be cured completely with effective care.


It is the mildest form of the disease which makes the gum red, swollen and bleeds easily. There is usually little or no discomfort which is often caused by inadequate oral hygiene.

Many factors contribute to gingivitis which includes diabetes, smoking, ageing, stress, pregnancy, HIV infection and use of certain medication.

Gingivitis can be cured with professional treatment and good oral home care.


If gingivitis left untreated leads to periodontitis. Plaque can grow and spread below the gum line over time. Toxins produced by the bacteria in plaque irritate the gums due to which the tissues and bone that support the teeth break down and destroyed.

Gums separate from the teeth that become infected. This destructive process has mild symptoms which eventually make the teeth lose and have to be removed.

There are many forms of periodontitis which include

  • Aggressive periodontitis

It occurs in patients who are even clinically healthy. There are rapid attachment loss and bone destruction.

  • Chronic periodontitis

It results in inflammation within the supporting tissues of the teeth, progressive attachment and leads to bone loss. It is common in adults but can happen at any age.

  • Periodontitis as a manifestation of systemic diseases

It often begins at a young age. Few conditions such as heart disease, respiratory disease, and diabetes are associated with this form of periodontitis.

  • Necrotizing periodontal disease

It is an infection characterized by necrosis of gingival tissues, periodontal ligament and alveolar bone. These lesions are found in individuals with systemic conditions such as HIV infection, malnutrition and immunosuppression.

Cure and prevention

Both gingivitis and periodontitis need good oral hygiene care. Brush and floss your teeth twice a day. Visit the dentist regularly for proper cleaning and examination.