Gingivitis vs. Gum Disease

Model Of Teeth and Gums

If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between gingivitis and gum disease, you’re not alone. The terms are used interchangeably in advertisements and oral care advice so often, that it can be hard to tell the two apart.

Simply put, gingivitis is a milder form of gum disease. But gum disease — also called periodontal disease or periodontitis — can also include aggressive infections that are so severe they lead to tooth loss.

Gingivitis is Reversible

Clinical gingivitis is inflammation of the gum tissues around the edges of your gumlines. Usually there’s mild swelling and/or redness. When you brush and floss, it’s normal to see some bleeding.

Gingivitis is caused by plaque bacteria and inadequate oral hygiene. Re-vamping your brushing and flossing routine is key. Even if you see some bleeding at first, that’s ok. Thoroughly cleaning your gums twice a day will usually reverse gingivitis within two weeks.

Periodontal/Gum Disease

If gingivitis isn’t treated, it will progress into a more severe stage of gum disease. At that point, the gum tissues will start to detach from your tooth roots. The result is receding gumlines or “pockets” under the gums. Heavy tartar, tooth mobility, and bad breath are common. Bone loss is visible on X-rays.

Periodontal disease is closely linked with major health issues like cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, and infertility. It’s important to screen for gum disease routinely so that you can treat it before your overall health suffers. And before you lose your teeth.

If you have problems with bleeding gums or it’s been more than six months since your last checkup, call Dunwoody Family & Cosmetic Dentistry today to reserve an exam.

Posted on Behalf of Dunwoody Family & Cosmetic Dentistry

1816 Independence Square, Suite B,
Dunwoody, GA 30338

Tel: (770) 399-9199

Mon - Thr 7:00am - 4:00pm
Friday Open until 1pm
(on the Fridays we are open)

Our Patient Reviews

Dunwoody Family & Cosmetic Dentistry
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Based on 126 reviews

Janice Overbeck

Angela is an incredible dentist and is on top of all of the latest and best technology. She is very honest and I love everyone at her practice. They are all great!

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I have been seeing Leslie and Dr. Bruce for about 20 years! Love their personalities and service. I highly recommend them!

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Highly professional and efficient service, stem to stern. Also the account manager makes it fun to pay my bill!!

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Dr. Ojibway and her team have helped me get my smile back. The office is beautiful and the environment is relaxing and very friendly.


1816 Independence Square, Suite B,
Dunwoody, GA 30338


Tel: (770) 399-9199

Practice Hours

Mon - Thr 7:00am - 4:00pm
Friday Open until 1pm
(on the Fridays we are open)