Inflammation can happen in different parts of our body and hence it becomes hard to avoid this problem. We normally know of inflammation occurring in digestive tracts or health organs in the central nervous system of our body. But it is not limited to that, inflammation can occur in mouth as well. It happens in the gums and sometimes creates a hole inside your gums which needs dental attention. Gum holes can also be of different kinds depending on the cause and tissue of inflammation. Most common cause among them is gum disease. Today we are going to discuss about some potential causes and treatment methods available to cure this dental problem.
What Causes Gum Holes?
Hole in the gums can appear because of multiple reasons. To know about the cause behind these gum holes, we have Dr. Nitya Gupta, BDS, and General Dentist at Elite Dental Health Clinic, Noida. She tells that gum holes are of three types based on tissue which is damaged. It can be pocketed, cratered or intended. Infections, bacteria and plaque are the reason due to which these gum diseases occur. Potential cause of gum holes determines the type of gum disease. Gum holes need a dental surgical procedure to treat if the cause of inflammation has spread in the gums deep and has affected the tissues there. To understand it better, have a look at each cause of gum problems and its probable symptoms.
4 Different Causes of Gum Problems
This is one of the major gum diseases which cause holes in the gums. Periodontitis is a severe oral health condition which needs immediate attention. Gum disease happen because of plaque build-up in the teeth and between them. Plaque is made up of bacteria that cause inflammation and irritation in the gums. Periodontitis gum disease occurs when you eat more sugary substances and food to gain energy. It can also result in bleeding in the gums and cause loss of tissue and bones from the affected area. This gradually results to hole formation in the gums.
Symptoms of Periodontitis include-
- Red swollen gums
- Sore gums
- Receding gums
- Sensitive teeth
- Bleeding in gums while brushing or flossing
- Pain while chewing food
Infections are also a source of gum holes. This can happen because of either virus infection or bacteria. There are two conditions which occur because of infection in gums, both of them are interrelated and occurs to more children than adults. Herpes simplex virus is the cause behind this gum infection and it may result of ulcers inside the mouth. Gum holes created because of infection and virus appear to be concave or cratered which makes it time taking process to treat. Actinomycosis is also a bacterial infection which causes gum holes but this condition happens in rare cases.
Symptoms of gum infections include-
- Swollen gums
- Loss of appetite
- Swollen lymph nodes
3. Open Tooth Socket
When a tooth is extracted from the mouth, a gum hole is caused because of the extraction. However this condition is not very serious and if proper oral hygiene is maintained, then the holes get healed automatically in about 8 weeks. Just after the extraction process, you may feel pain or swelling in the area. Do not disturb or put anything that is not prescribed, otherwise it can lead you to dry socket. Dry socket could be much painful condition that affects the nerves of the tooth and then a filling is required to calm it.
4. Necrotizing periodontal disease
This is a severe form of periodontal disease but occurs rarely in people. Most of the patients are treated before this worse situation arises. This is a gum hole condition where the tissues in the gums die due to increase in infection and weakened immune system. Necrotizing periodontal disease causes painful ulcers in the mouth and results in difficulty in eating or chewing food.
Symptoms for necrotizing periodontal disease are-
- Severe pain in gums
- Bleeding in gums
- Bad breath
- Swollen nymph nodes
- Receding gums
Treatment Options Available For Curing Gum Holes
Treatment procedure depends on the cause of gum problem that has occurred. As discussed earlier, gum holes can be caused due to 4 different reasons, hence the treatment methods also differ accordingly.
1. Scaling and Root Planing
This is used as the first line of treatment for curing the gum holes. This is done to remove the plaque that gets accumulated on the teeth and between them. Scaling and root planing are outpatient dental procedure that does not involve any serious discomfort or pain. This treatment procedure is done mostly to treat Periodontitis. It is a deep cleaning method which helps your regain your oral health. It requires two steps-
Scaling- the process of removing the plaque from the teeth and gumline.
Root planing- This is the process of scaling the roots of teeth, located deep in the gumline. Then planing helps to smoothen-up the roots and reattach it to your gums.
2. Periodontal Surgery
This surgical method is opted when the scaling and planing procedure is not sufficient to cure gum holes. Periodontal surgery is a oral surgical procedure which is done on patients with deep gum holes affecting nerves and tissues majorly. This also has categorization based on severity of the patient. It can be done by the following procedures-
Flap Surgery- This includes small incision made in gums, the plaque is removes when the gum tissues and lifted in the process.
Regenerative Procedure- The gum tissue is folded back and then plague is removed in this surgical method. Mostly used in condition of lost tissue and bone
Gum grafting- This is done in receded gums and involves taking tissues from another area of your mouth and replacing healthy tissues with infected ones.
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