Dr John, what is periodontal disease?

Dr John: Periodontal disease is the progressive breakdown of the supporting structures of the teeth. The primary cause of periodontal disease is a combination of plaque and calculus. Plaque is bacteria that form on the teeth. Calculus is the hard stuff that forms on the teeth. Calculus requires the attention of the dentist or hygienist to remove. Whereas plaque, can usually be removed by the patient. The areas the patient can’t quite get to to remove, then that’s when we get involved with the cleaning and removing of the plaque and bacteria. If left alone, or untreated, or if we don’t remove it, then unfortunately, the plaque and bacteria will create a chronic inflammatory process, which results in the continued progression of bone loss around the teeth and ultimately tooth loss.