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Periodontitis means "inflammation around the tooth" - it is a serious gum infection that damages the soft tissue and bone that supports the tooth. All periodontal diseases, including periodontitis, are infections which affect the periodontium. The periodontium are the tissues around a tooth, tissues that support the tooth. With periodontitis, the alveolar bone around the teeth is slowly and progressively lost. Microorganisms, such as bacteria, stick to the surface of the tooth and multiply - an overactive immune system reacts with inflammation.

According to a new study, smoking causes the body to turn against its own helpful bacteria, leaving smokers more vulnerable to disease.

 

Despite the daily disturbance of brushing and flossing, the mouth of a healthy person contains a stable ecosystem of healthy bacteria. New research shows that the mouth of a smoker is a much more chaotic, diverse ecosystem - and is much more susceptible to invasion by harmful bacteria.

As a group, smokers suffer from higher rates of oral diseases - especially gum disease - than do nonsmokers.

Gingivitis means inflammation of the gums (gingiva). It commonly occurs because of films of bacteria that accumulate on the teeth - plaque; this type is called plaque-induced gingivitis.Gingivitis is a non-destructive type of periodontal disease. If left untreated, gingivitis can progress to periodontitis, which is more serious and can eventually lead to loss of teeth.