Many risk factors increase the likelihood of periodontal disease development, as well as the severity and speed at which it may occur.

Among the most common are:

  • heredity
  • smoking
  • diabetes
  • stress
  • medication
  • nutrition
  • poor oral hygiene
  • faulty dentistry
  • hormonal variations
  • immunocompromised
  • connective tissue diseases

The primary reasons to consider risk factors for periodontal disease are to understand the likelihood of its development and progression, and the predictability of favorable treatment outcomes. It is important to understand that risk factors don’t cause gum disease. They increase the likelihood that it will occur.

All risk factors are not created equal. Diabetes and smoking are the biggest risk factors for periodontal disease, increasing the occurrence, severity, and speed of onset and progression. The number one systemic condition that increases susceptibility to periodontal disease is diabetes. The number one systemic condition adversely affected by periodontal disease is also diabetes.

Poorly controlled diabetic people have a much higher incidence of diabetic complications including heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and periodontal disease. Hyperglycemia leads to gum tissue breakdown, decreased ability of the body to defend itself against the pathogenic bacteria, and a reduced ability to repair damaged gum tissues. Unfortunately, periodontal disease also contributes to poor glycemic control by increasing insulin resistance, creating a vicious cycle.

Smoking is the number one environmental and behavioral risk factor for periodontal disease, increasing the rate of bone resorption, chronic inflammation, and suppression of antibodies, which facilitates bacterial flourishing. Other risk factors play important roles as well. Many common medications contribute to xerostomia, reducing the protective properties of saliva.

Schedule an Appointment

Gum disease is extremely important, and it’s something that you should be aware of. If you haven’t had a dentist appointment in a while or your gums are showing signs of gum disease, schedule an appointment. The team at Designer Smiles Dentistry can provide you with the guidance and solutions that you need. Visit our office in Missouri City and we can take care of you.