Gum Disease Comes in Stages | Walnut Creek Dentist

Believe it or not, having gum disease isn’t a life sentence. It can be treated, but the earlier it is caught, the earlier it is to treat. Unfortunately, it isn’t something that can be diagnosed without the untrained eye. This is why it is not only important to keep up with a proper dental hygiene routine, but to visit the only person that can help with your developing gum disease – your dentist.

Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is caused by bacteria found in plaque, or that weird film that forms on your teeth if you haven’t brushed. If the plaque is not removed, the bacteria will infect not only your gums and teeth, but your gum tissue and bone that supports your teeth. There are three stages of gum disease: gingivitis, periodontitis and advanced periodontitis.

Gingivitis. Gingivitis is an inflammation of the gums caused by plaque build-up at your gum line. This is the only stage of gum disease that is reversible since it hasn’t affected the connective tissue and bone.

Periodontitis. This is the stage where the supporting bone and tissues are irreversibly damaged. Your gums start to form pockets below the gum line, which in turn traps plaque and food debris. With proper treatment and improved home care, you can typically prevent further damage.

Advanced periodontitis. Advanced periodontitis is the final stage of gum disease, where the tissues and supporting bone are destroyed and can affect your bite. Unfortunately, if treatment can’t save your teeth, they may be need to be removed.

For more information about gum disease, call Drs. Barmby and Frick in Walnut Creek, CA at 9255-934-5526 or visit

Drs. Barmby and Frick proudly serve patients from Walnut Creek and all surrounding areas.