The newsLINK Group - Adult Periodontal Disease

Editorial Library Category: General Business | Dental | Periodontist – Gum Disease Topics: Periodontal Disease Title: Adult Periodontal Disease Author: newsLINK Staff Synopsis: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which is part of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), published a report in April 2007 that studies U.S. trends for oral health in the U.S. during two periods of time: 1988 to 1994, and 1999 to 2004. Editorial: Adult Periodontal Disease 4064 South Highland Drive, Millcreek, Utah 84124 │ thenewslinkgroup.com │ (v) 801.676.9722 │ (tf) 855.747.4003 │ (f) 801.742.5803 Editorial Library | © The newsLINK Group LLC 1 The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which is part of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), published a report in April 2007 that studied U.S. trends for oral health in the U.S. during two periods of time: 1988 to 1994, and 1999 to 2004. A comparison of this report with information about the early 1970s shows that the number of adults with periodontal disease has gone down, but that some population groups have a much higher incidence of this disease than other groups. For the sake of precision, the researchers had specific definitions for what was and wasn’t considered to be periodontal disease. To understand the technical definitions for periodontal disease, you need to know what is meant by the terms “attachment loss” and “pocket depth.” Periodontal tissue is the tissue around the tooth. It actually has four defined structures: the gingiva, which is what you think of as your gums; the alveolar bones, which you normally think of as your upper and lower jaw and which have tooth sockets in them to hold your teeth; the periodontal ligament, and the cementum. These last two form the bridge between your teeth and your jaws. The cementum covers the root of your tooth, much the same way that enamel covers the crown. The periodontal ligament contains the fibers that connect your teeth to your jaw bone. In dentistry, attachment is a term that refers to the way the periodontal ligament and the cementum, around the root of the tooth, connect the tooth to the alveolar bones. Attachment loss means the teeth are not as firmly attached in the mouth as they should be because connective tissue fibers have been damaged. The amount of loss is measured in millimeters. Pocket depth has to do with your gums pulling away from your teeth, creating a space that is usually filled with liquid. The normal depth of this space, from top to bottom, is three millimeters or less. That’s the depth that can be easily cleaned out when you brush your teeth. The researchers defined gingivitis and periodontal disease as follows: Gingivitis, which is an early stage of periodontal disease, was defined as an inflammation of the gums. Someone with gingivitis has not yet lost any bone or oral tissue. Periodontal disease was defined as having at least one site where the attachment loss was three millimeters or more, and the pocket depth was four millimeters or more. Moderate periodontal disease was defined as any situation where the space between two teeth had an attachment loss of four or more millimeters, or at least two teeth that have five or more millimeters of pocket depth between them. Severe periodontal disease means that for at least two teeth, the attachment loss in the space between them is six or more millimeters, and one or more teeth have a pocket depth of five millimeters or more between the teeth. Between the ages of 20 and 64, 8.52 percent of all adults have periodontal disease. For 5.08 percent of these people, the periodontal disease is either moderate or severe. Periodontal disease is more likely for: Men Older people. Risk in general increases at age 35, and there is a greater likelihood of moderate or severe periodontal disease starting at age 50. Blacks and Hispanics Current smokers People who are poor and who have less than a high- school education

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