Gum Disease Specialist

Luz Hernandez, DDS -  - General Dentistry

Luz Hernandez, DDS

General Dentistry & Cosmetic Dentistry located in Wesley Chapel, FL

Having a gum infection can make your breath smell bad and cause pain when you bite down. Even if your gum disease doesn’t have symptoms, Luz Hernandez, DDS, at her practice in Tampa, Florida, can screen you for gum disease and provide treatment and preventive care. To find out if you have gum disease, call the office or request an appointment online at Luz Hernandez, DDS today.

Gum Disease Q & A


What is gum disease?

Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is a type of infection affecting the soft, pink tissues in your mouth that surround your teeth. It’s one of the most common causes of tooth loss in adults. There are two stages of gum disease that differ in their severity:


Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease. If you have it, you might not even know it. Dr. Hernandez checks for signs of gingivitis at your regular exams. Treatment is as simple as getting a deep cleaning and altering your oral care habits at home.


Periodontitis is the more advanced stage of gum disease. If you have periodontitis, your gums separate from your teeth and your teeth can become loose. 


What are some common gum disease symptoms?

The symptoms of gum disease get worse as the disease progresses. You might have gum disease for a long time with no indicative symptoms. When you do get symptoms, they might include:

  • Bleeding when you brush or floss
  • Swollen, red, or inflamed gums
  • Bad breath or a bad taste in your mouth
  • Oozing pus between your teeth
  • Gum recession
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together

Gum disease starts when bacteria builds up into a sticky white substance called plaque on your teeth. You can remove plaque with proper brushing habits and regular cleanings, but it can harden into tartar, which is much harder to remove. If you have hard tartar along your gum line, Dr. Hernandez can remove it.


How is gum disease treated?

Dr. Hernandez might ask about your family history of gum disease because of DNA markers that could indicate your predisposition for the disease. Some people are at a higher risk because of their genetics and should take extra diligent care of their teeth and gums to prevent gum disease. 

If you already have gum disease, Dr. Hernandez might suggest one or more of these treatments:

  • Scaling (tartar removal)
  • Root planing (smoothing the exposed roots of your teeth)
  • Periodontal surgery
  • Laser gum surgery
  • Dental implants for teeth lost to gum disease

If you brush for at least two minutes twice daily, floss once a day, and come to all of your dental cleaning appointments, you can minimize your chances of getting gum disease and even treat it in its early stages.

To learn more about gum disease, treatment, and prevention, call Luz Hernandez, DDS or contact us to request an appointment online today.