Posts tagged: periodontal disease progression

Beyond Inflammation – The 4 Stages of Periodontal Disease

A recent study conducted by the CDC, estimates that nearly half of Americans 30-years-of-age or older show some form of periodontal disease— whether this ranges from mild illness, with shallow pocket formation around teeth, to severe illness involving bone loss and systemic inflammation.  For seniors, the numbers are even higher— skyrocketing to an astounding two-thirds of the population sampled.  As with most complex illnesses, early intervention is often key to a better outcome; in this case, intervention may prevent tooth and bone loss, or even later manifestations of cardiovascular disease.

Unsurprisingly, oral bacteria and plaque are the main drivers behind periodontal disease.  As a bacterial biofilm, with a complex, communal structure, plaque is much more resilient than single-celled bacteria and has greater resistance to bodily defenses and antimicrobial agents.  Even in the short term, plaque biofilms have been shown to promote the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines and enzymes from immune cells; these substances, in turn, contribute to the breakdown of the periodontal ligament— the connective tissue that holds teeth in place. Read more »

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