Dentistry: Unveiling the Iceberg Analogy

Dentistry: Unveiling the Iceberg Analogy

Team Uncategorized

Dentistry involves more than meets the eye. Perhaps that is why, in some ways, teeth can be compared to an iceberg. What you see is only a small fraction of what actually exists. Just like the majority of an iceberg is found below the water’s surface, a large portion of your teeth cannot be seen. 

Some dentists focus on the part of the tooth that is above the line whereas others focus on everything below it, including the tooth’s root structure and gums. This dental work below the surface is considered periodontal care

Did you know that the visible part of your tooth may appear healthy and stunning while its hidden parts may require a lot of dental treatment? Here are 4 signs you may need periodontal work. 

1. Bleeding Gums

Unless you’ve accidentally bumped your gums or otherwise have given them a reason to bleed, they shouldn’t be bleeding. If your gums bleed when you brush or floss your teeth, this can be a very common sign of periodontal disease. 

Having pockets of pus or painful abscesses along the gumline can also be an indication that infection is present and you should be evaluated for gum disease. 

2. Inflamed Gums

Gums that are healthy and thriving are usually firm and pink. So, if your gums are red, swollen, or even sore - this could also be a sign of periodontal disease. Gums that are starting to recede are definite indicators that there is a problem. 

Gums should never be painful to touch. If you are experiencing any of these signs, it is imperative that you seek treatment as soon as possible before you risk losing teeth. 

3. Bad Breath

Halitosis, more commonly referred to as bad breath, is something that nobody wants to deal with. Unfortunately, bad breath that occurs regardless of how often you brush and floss can signal there is something deeper going on. 

If you have tried stepping up your oral hygiene, using mouthwash, and chewing mint gum or mints, but your bad breath still persists, then contact your dentist. There are many different reasons for bad breath - including periodontal disease. 

4. Loose Teeth 

The further periodontal disease is allowed to progress, the greater chance you have of the gums pulling away from the teeth. When this happens, it makes room for pockets of bacteria to fill up and eat away at the supportive structures of the teeth. 

It is not uncommon for teeth to begin to feel loose and start shifting from where they are supposed to be. Without immediate intervention, the teeth will fall out as a result of late-stage periodontal disease. 

Conclusion: Below the Surface 

With so much going on with teeth below the surface - especially thanks to periodontal disease - it is easy to see why certain aspects of dentistry can be referred to as an iceberg. Even though your teeth look perfect above water, they may still have a lot of issues that you cannot see. 

Routine visits to the dentist for professional cleanings and examinations will allow these underlying issues to be caught and treated before it is too late. The earlier that gum disease is addressed, the better chance you have of reversing or halting its spread. 

The dental team at The Smile Architects is highly skilled in working above and below the gum line. Contact us today to see how we can ensure you have a healthy, beautiful smile - in areas you can see and those you cannot.