Top
 

How do health care professionals diagnose gum disease?

Gingivitis Disease > Oral Preventive Care  > How do health care professionals diagnose gum disease?

How do health care professionals diagnose gum disease?

The following methods and symptoms and signs are very useful in the diagnosis of gum disease during routine checkups:

  • Measuring the gums: A dentist or dental hygienist will use a periodontal probe to measure the depths of the pockets around all of the teeth in the mouth generally once per calendar year. Healthy gums will have pockets 1 mm-3 mm deep. Beyond that, the deeper the pockets, the more severe the disease.
  • Taking X-rays: Dental X-rays, particularly bitewing X-rays, will help show the level of the underlying bone and whether any bone has been lost to periodontal disease.
  • Examining sensitive teeth: Teeth that have become sensitive around the gum line may indicate areas of receding gums.
  • Check for loose teeth: Teeth may become loose due to bone loss or an incorrect bite.
  • Checking the gums: A dentist or hygienist will look for red, swollen, or bleeding gums.