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Periodontal pockets are a sign of advancing gum disease. The gums naturally form narrow, protective pockets around each tooth; if these pockets become inflamed with infections, they can lead to dangerous dental conditions. Without daily dental care near San Jose, patients risk developing periodontal pockets and undergoing extensive periodontal procedures. Continue reading to learn more about periodontal pockets.

They can be prevented.

The best way to prevent periodontal pockets and gum disease is to engage in daily dental care and schedule dental exams regularly. Part of a dental exam typically includes a dental probe that measures the pocket depths of the gums surrounding each tooth. By flossing and brushing every day, this pocket depth will be at an acceptable depth—typically one to three millimeters—and there will be no risk of future inflammation.

They occur due to gum disease.

When daily dental care is ignored, patients risk contracting gum disease. With gum disease, the gums become inflamed with bacteria and toxins, which can lead to red, swollen, and bleeding gums. In addition to inflamed gums, the pockets surrounding each tooth can collect the toxins and become infected. As this gum tissue becomes infected, the connective tissues will pull away from the teeth, eventually leading to shifting or loose teeth.

They can signal bone loss.

As infection spreads deeper into the gum pockets, it can soon affect the health of the teeth and jawbone. Without the connective gum tissue holding the teeth in place, the teeth and bones can lose their strength, which can lead to bone loss and shifting teeth. As the bone degrades, the surrounding teeth and shape of the mouth are in danger of further degradation.

They can be corrected.

If the beginning stages of periodontal pockets are identified by a dentist or hygienist, then the early stage of gum disease, also known as gingivitis, can be reversed with better dental care. If the pockets worsen, then an intense dental cleaning may need to be done to restore as much of the tissue health as possible.