You can Inherit Gum Disease

How Family History Affects Your Risk for Gum Disease

Many people today have gingivitis. This is a mild form of gum disease that is often first revealed by a  bleeding of the gums  when you brush your teeth. Unless you take care of your teeth, it can become  periodontitis.  Some people, however, seem to be more prone to gum disease, and it develops faster in their mouth. For them, it is genetic.

The Discovery

While researchers were looking into periodontitis, they were hearing patients talk about how some of their parents and siblings also had the  gum disease.  Further research now supports the idea that some people simply inherit gum disease – and it progresses faster in them.

One study conducted recently concluded that genetics may be involved in as many as 50 percents of the cases today. As many as 30 percents of Americans are believed to have some kind of susceptibility to periodontitis because of their genes. This makes them up to 20 times more likely to get an advanced  periodontal disease.

Signs of Gum Disease

Gum disease in the early stages is referred to as gingivitis. This is usually revealed by bleeding and  inflamed gums.  If allowed to continue, it becomes periodontal disease. At this point, pockets will begin to form at the gum line and you may see pus oozing out of them. The bacteria that causes the damage multiples faster in the pockets and soon starts destroying the tissues that support your teeth, along with the bone. If left to continue without treatment, your teeth will start to become loose, and later fall out.

Preventing More Serious Health Problems

Even though periodontitis is not something you want to have, it is not the worst thing. Researchers have discovered that the inflammation caused by gum disease can also affect your overall health in a very negative way.

It is now known that this same inflammation can cause very serious problems in other parts of your body. These problems include more than 50 serious illnesses including heart disease, diabetes, pneumonia, COPD, infertility, ED, Alzheimer's, and several types of cancer.

Tips for Reducing Your Risk Factors

Even though some people may have a risk for genetic gum disease, it does not mean that you cannot or should not try and stop it. Because periodontal treatment and periodontal surgery can be very expensive, it is to your benefit to protect your teeth and gums as much as possible. In addition, having the genes does not necessarily mean that it will affect you.

Reducing your risk factors may actually help you to avoid gum disease. Risk factors that you can eliminate include:

  • Improve your dental care

    It is always a good idea to establish good care of your teeth with daily brushing twice a day and daily flossing. You also want to use mouthwash each day to help reduce plaque. According to, some people may still get gum disease in spite of excellent care of their teeth, but you may still be able to delay it.

  • Quit smoking

    Smoking is one of the worst things you can do if you want to avoid gum disease. Not only does it promote it, but it also acts to delay the effectiveness of any treatment of it.

  • Reduce stress

    Stress decreases your body's ability to fight bacteria. This affects the bacterial balance in your mouth, allowing the  bad bacteria  to multiply, causing an increased amount of inflammation.

Genetic Testing

People who want to know whether or not they have the gene that will make them more susceptible to getting advanced periodontitis can be tested for it. There is a commercial test available. The advantage of taking the test is that a dentist can provide specialized treatment that should help delay it.

Controlling Gum Disease

The bacterium that causes gum disease is always present in your mouth. You cannot get rid of it. With healthy eating and good care of your teeth, you can keep it under control, but there is no cure for it.

If you have a gene for periodontitis, it is important to get regular dental checkups. This will help reveal the first signs of gum disease and periodontitis and enable early treatment.

You will also want to eat healthy so that your teeth get the correct nutrients for their health. This will help keep your gums and tooth enamel strong, and will also help your immune system to fight it.

Get Gum Disease Treatment

If you know that you have gum disease, make an appointment for periodontal disease treatment. The sooner that you get started, the better off you will be.

Periodontal disease should be treated quickly to prevent more damage. If you have the potential for genetic gum disease, you can be tested for it and get periodontal disease treatment by Dr. Kumar T. Vadivel, DDS, FDS RCS, MS, a Board-certified Periodontist. He is also capable of treating all phases of periodontitis. He has dental offices in the Carrollton, TX and Grapevine, TX areas. For more information or to set up a consultation, call today at 214-731-0123.