Did you know that genetics is a risk factor for periodontal disease? Or that advanced periodontal disease is the number one cause of tooth loss among adults? In the earliest stages of periodontal disease the gums become inflamed. As it advances, both soft and hard tissues that hold the teeth in place are affected. Some common risk factors are:


The change of developing gum disease increases with age. According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, over 70% of Americans 65 and older have gum disease.


Uncontrolled diabetes can put you at a higher risk of periodontal disease. Not only can diabetes make gum disease worse, but gum disease can also make diabetic symptoms worse. Make sure to inform Dr. Jenny of any medical changes you may have.


Research shows that stress can make it more difficult for the body to fight off infections, including periodontal disease.

Smoking/Tobacco Use

Tobacco users are at increased risk of periodontal disease. Since nicotine compresses blood vessels, smokers may not see typical symptoms such as red, puffy, and bleeding gums. This may cause damage before smokers even understand there is a problem.


Some drugs such as oral contraceptives, anti-depressants, steroid meds, and certain types of anti-epilepsy meds can affect your oral health. Make sure to inform Dr. Jenny of any medication you may be on.

Poor Dental Hygiene

The best way to fight periodontal disease is to have good oral hygiene. Removing plaque buildup is essential to keeping your gums free from disease. Remember to brush your teeth 2x a day and floss regularly.

Fortunately, good oral hygiene and regular visits to our office can turn early gum disease around. If you feel any of these risk factors pertain to you, be extra diligent about your home care as well as your regular visit to Pine Ridge Dental. And don’t forget to ask us about Laser Bacteria Reduction Therapy!