Endodontist. A specialist who treats disease and injury involving the pulp (commonly called the nerve) of the tooth.1
Gingivitis. An early form of periodontal (gum) disease in which the gums are inflamed and become infected, swollen, and tender. When plaque builds up over a period of time, the buildup can lead to gingivitis.2,3
Orthodontics. A branch of dentistry that deals with correcting irregular teeth, such as with braces.1
Periodontitis. Gingivitis can advance to periodontitis, an infection of the gums and bones that hold the teeth. It is a major cause of tooth loss in adults.4
Plaque. A naturally occurring, sticky film of bacteria that coats the teeth. You get rid of plaque when you brush and floss. If not removed regularly, plaque can lead to gum disease.5
1 “Dental Terms.”Academy of General Dentistry. http://www.knowyourteeth.com/infobites/glossary/ Accessed 2010.
2 “Disease, Gum (Disease, Periodontal).” American Dental Association. www.ada.org/2660.aspx?currentTab=2 Accessed 2010. Accessed 2010.
3 “Gingivitis.” U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, February 22, 2010. www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001056.htm Accessed 2010.
4 “Gum (Periodontal) Disease.” National Institute of Craniofacial Research, National Institutes of Health, May 28, 2008. http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/OralHealth/Topics/GumDiseases Accessed 2010.
5 “Plaque.” American Dental Association. www.ada.org/public/topics/plaque.asp Accessed 2010.
Online Medical Reviewer:
Eakle, Stephan W., DDS
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