Discover the Link Between Gum Disease and Your Health

Early Detection is Key

Gum disease, otherwise known as periodontal disease, is a progressive condition that can affect your overall health. Many people do not realize that gum disease is linked to systemic health conditions because a spreading infection can trigger inflammation in the body. This is why Dr. J. Steven Smith and Dr. Jennifer Smith Ellis encourage patients to come in as soon as they detect problems with their oral health. Early detection is key to getting this infection under control.


If you notice any of the following gum disease symptoms, you must come in for an oral evaluation as soon as possible:

  • Red or swollen gums
  • Tenderness of the gums
  • Pockets forming around the teeth
  • Gum soreness
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Loose or shifting teeth


Studies show inflammation may be responsible for the link between an infection in the mouth and chronic inflammatory conditions. People with diabetes are more likely to have periodontal disease because they are more susceptible to contracting in infection, according to the American Academy of Periodontology. Periodontal disease can also increase blood sugar levels which increases the risk of diabetic complications. Gum disease has also been linked to:

  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Osteoporosis
  • Respiratory disease
  • Kidney cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Blood cancer


The good news is gum disease can be treated without surgery. Our doctors are skilled in scaling and root planing therapy for mild cases of gum disease and laser gum surgery for moderate to severe cases. Both of these treatment options are alternatives to traditional, invasive gum surgery and can help you achieve optimal oral health after gum disease. Both approaches are minimally invasive and will not require extensive healing or downtime.

Learn more about our gum disease treatment options by scheduling your appointment with Dr. Smith or Dr. Ellis today.

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