During every regular dental exam, Dr. Welsh carefully checks for signs of gingivitis and periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease is a serious condition affecting the gums and soft tissues in the mouth and around the jaw. According to studies, 8 in 10 Americans have some form of gum disease. Left untreated, gum disease can cause:

  • Significant tooth decay
  • Tooth loss
  • Deterioration of the jaw bone
  • Increased risk of heart attack
  • Risk of stroke

Gum disease is caused by untreated plaque in the mouth. Plaque is comprised of damaging bacteria that begins to eat away, or erode, the soft tissues in the mouth. Periodontal disease is prevented with daily brushing, flossing, and regular dental check-ups and cleanings.

Stages of Periodontal Disease


Gingivitis is the first stage of periodontal disease. Plaque and its toxin by-products irritate the gums, making them tender, inflamed, and likely to bleed.


Plaque hardens into calculus (tartar). As calculus and plaque continue to build up, the gums begin to recede from the teeth. Deeper pockets form between the gums and teeth and become filled with bacteria and pus. The gums become very irritated, inflamed, and bleed easily. Slight to moderate bone loss may be present.

Advanced Periodontitis

The teeth lose more support as the gums, bone, and periodontal ligament continue to be destroyed. Unless treated, the affected teeth will become very loose and may be lost. Generalized moderate to severe bone loss may be present.

If you’re worried that you might have gingivitis or periodontal disease, it’s best to be proactive about your care.

Perio Protect Program

Dr. Welsh is pleased to offer the Perio Protect Program for patients experiencing various stages of gum disease.

Perio Protect is a comprehensive treatment method that attacks the onset of bacteria and biofilms in the mouth. A gentle and effective way to attack the bacteria that cause gum disease, the program:

  • Is minimally invasive
  • Leverages a combination of medications to address various stages of gum disease
  • Is applied by the patient in the comfort of their own home
  • Utilizes custom made mouth trays, worn for 60 minutes a day

Dr. Welsh will assess the condition of your periodontal disease, and recommend a treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. The frequency and duration of at-home treatment is dependent on the severity of periodontal disease experienced by the patient.

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