In the U.S., an estimated three out of four adults have some level of gum disease, and many don’t realize it. Gum disease is the inflammation and infection of the gums and the surrounding tissue. Generally caused by bacterial plaque, it is the biggest cause of adult tooth loss.
How Gum Disease Develops
Plaque, a thin, colorless film, is caused by bacteria in your mouth and it develops on your teeth. Left untreated, bacterial plaque will harden to tartar. A rough, porous mineral buildup usually yellow or brown in color, tartar forms at and underneath the gum line. Tartar excretes the toxins that cause gum inflammation, resulting in the development of periodontal pockets that hold even more toxins and bacteria. This condition can lead to the loosening of the teeth, or even make teeth fall out. As the condition worsens, the accumulated toxins and bacteria move deeper into the jaw to destroy the bone that holds your teeth in place.