Terrified, can't sleep - Periodintitis?

Aug 3, 2019
Best answers
Hi all,

A bit of background: last teeth cleaning was last summer/fall and had no major issues. My teeth brushing habits at the time were brushing 2x per day and flossing a few times/week. Since then I've gotten a bit lazier and notice that I usually brush only once per day (electric toothbrush) and floss a few times per week (I know it's awful..and I'm not sure why I backslid into laziness..)
Long story short - I was supposed to have a cleaning in February but missed it due to switching insurance. I still haven't been able to find a new dentist that is suitable but at this point I'm willing to see whoever.
Lately I've noticed that there's a bitter taste in my mouth. Even if I floss and brush several times per day it won't go away. I'm hoping its just telling me I need a cleaning but I'm petrified that it's periodintitis, that I'll lose my teeth and that it's irreversible.
I feel extremely guilty and anxious that I've been ignoring this problem and that now it might be too late.

Posting image below at the end of this post, can any dentists let me know if they have any thoughts based on the photo? and how quickly it can progress from gingivitis (if it was in that stage first?)

I don't have any symptoms except occasional bleeding when flossing in the back molars (top mostly) and the bad taste. I don't think gums have receded but my understanding is that damage can all be under the gum?
I haven't been able to sleep all night, unfortunately got sucked into too much googling and reading horrible articles about how dangerous this is. I feel like such an idiot for not keeping up with brushing enough :(




Verified Dentist
Jun 14, 2018
Best answers
Unfortunately we cannot diagnose without x-rays and clinical examination including probing your gums to measure gum attachments. The x-rays will reveal the level of bone attachment and if any bone has receded, that receded bone is permanently lost. Gum probing shows 2 valuable information. The higher the number (5 and over) shows greater gum attachment loss and bleeding which shows active disease and inflammation. You can have bleeding and inflammation with no bone loss (gingivitis). If you have bone loss, you need to quickly receive deep cleanings and re-evaluation for gum improvement. If your gums improve, you must have regular maintenance and followup because periodontitis usually damages bone in spurts and cycles for life. If your gums don't improve, you need to see a gum specialist (periodontist) for possible gum surgery or laser treatments. Possible conflicts of interests with periodontists are that they make more money placing implants than saving teeth.

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