Periodontal Disease 101

What it is
Periodontal disease, known as gum disease or periodontitis, is one of the most common causes of tooth loss. In the United States, it is estimated that half of Americans aged 30 or older have advanced gum disease. While highly prevalent, this dental condition is preventable with a good oral health regimen.

Periodontal disease symptoms become apparent as bacteria and debris accumulate around teeth and below the gum line and hardens into tartar. If not removed by a professional, tartar and bacteria can cause inflammation of the gums and weakening of teeth.
There are variables that can increase your risk of periodontitis that range from genetic predisposition and underlying health conditions, to certain lifestyle habits. Diet, taking certain medications, decreased immunity, and hormonal changes can also increase your chances of developing gum disease.

Periodontitis begins with the onset of gingivitis. In this early stage, bacteria builds up, irritating the surrounding gums. As bacteria accumulate and plaque builds and hardens into tartar, there is a weakening of bone and connective tissue that keeps teeth in their sockets. As bacteria spreads, pockets that trap further bacteria begin to form around teeth and under soft tissue. In patients with advanced periodontal disease, teeth become loose and fall out.

One of the most difficult aspects of spotting periodontal disease without help from a dentist is that the condition can progress slowly in patients and may not always produce obvious signs. Patients may notice:
– Gum tenderness
– Gum recession
– Bad breath or bad taste in your mouth
– Loose teeth or a change in teeth alignment
Diagnosis of gum disease typically involves visiting a dentist for a visual examination of your oral condition, as well as charting pocket depths and using X-Rays to check bone loss in areas with deeper periodontal pockets.

Early diagnosis gives patients the greatest chance of reversing damage with nonsurgical treatments. These procedures include root scaling and planing, which removes tartar and bacteria from surfaces of teeth and beneath the gums and smooths root surfaces,. Antibiotics that are either taken orally or topically as a rinse, can also be used to reduce bacteria and inflammation.
For patients with advanced periodontitis, dental surgery may be the most effective option to reduce pocket size and restore the healthy appearance and supportive structure of soft tissue.

Periodontal disease is preventable by practicing consistent and good oral hygiene. As a rule of thumb, you should be taking between 3-5 minutes twice day to care for your teeth and gums by flossing first to loosen any food particles and bacteria, and brushing to clean all surfaces of teeth. You should also visit your dentist twice a year for thorough teeth cleanings. Patients displaying early signs of gum disease may require more frequent dental visits throughout the year.
If are exhibiting signs and symptoms of gum disease, you should contact your dentist as soon as possible. The sooner you can receive treatment, the more likely you will be able to reverse any damage caused by periodontal disease.


Hay Fever Can Make Your Teeth Hurt!



Ragweed is the number one cause of fall hay fever in the United States. In North Carolina, the season typically begins in August, peaking in September and ending with the first frost. If you find yourself reaching for the box of tissue more often due to increased sneezing and itchy-watery eyes, you may be one of the many people suffering from seasonal allergic rhinitis, or better known as “hay fever”.

How does this Affects your Teeth?

If you are one of the almost 36 million Americans suffering from “hay fever”, you may experience pain from your teeth. Sinus problems that are worsened with the onset of “hay fever season” can manifest as tooth pain.

Allergic rhinitis is an allergic inflammation of the nasal airways. This happens when you breath in something your immune system in sensitive too.  Allergic rhinitis can cause inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose, eyes, eustachian tubes, middle ear, sinuses, and throat .  These symptoms manifest in any combination that can consist of: sneezing, itchy nose, itchy eyes, itchy ears, runny nose, postnasal drip, congestion, headache, earache, tearing, red eyes, eye swelling, and fatigue. In addition, this can cause dental pain in your upper back teeth, and your lower back teeth. Unfortunately, allergies are common and affect approximately 20% of the population.

How to Help “Hay Fever” Symptoms?

Unless you live in an allergen free bubble or walk around with your own oxygen mask, outside allergies are near impossible to avoid.  The best defense is to avoid outdoors during peek pollen times.  Ragweed is at its worse between 5am and 10am and also, dry, hot windy days.   Antihistamines, decongestants, and nose sprays are used to alleviate the allergic reactions caused by ragweed.

To keep your teeth in perfect condition, contact the offices of J.C. Duncan DDS FAGD

J.C. Duncan Family Dentistry
103 Commerce Center Drive Suite 101
Huntersville, NC 28078

Phone: (704) 266-1486
Fax: (704) 948-1969
Email: Click here to email our office

What is ICare Financial and Care Credit?

Financial AssistanceDuring our crazy journey of life, we sometimes find ourselves with minimal dental insurance or maybe no dental insurance at all. This does not mean your dental health should suffer. We realize with the overwhelming cost of living, putting away money for your dental health is difficult and not usually at the top of your priority list.

Your dental health care is something that is needed to ensure your best overall health. Unfortunately, many people treat their dental health as optional but it as important as visiting your primary care physician regularly. Dental problems and health problems are many times related so treating your dental problems are essential to maintaining a healthy you.

The office of J.C. Duncan DDS FAGD is proud to offer payment options to help you maintain your dental health.  Our goal is to help as many people as we can maintain a beautiful healthy smile.

What is Care Credit?




CareCredit, a GE Money Company, gives you convenient payment options so you can get the procedure you want, when you want it.

Care Credit is a credit card used for your health, beauty and wellness needs.  Many patients will put off much needed treatments and procedures because they cannot afford to pay. CareCredit allows you to pay over time instead of a lump sum prior to treatment.

What is ICare Financial?

icare financial

iCare Financial is a full-service consumer financial organization in dental, medical, automotive and consumer service verticals. They offer consumer and patient financial programs for 0% interest, Everyone is APPROVED with No Credit Check!  Call Donna at our office for more information.

J.C. Duncan, DDS, FAGD

J.C. Duncan Family Dentistry
103 Commerce Center Drive Suite 101
Huntersville, NC 28078

Phone: (704) 266-1486
Fax: (704) 948-1969
Email: Click here to email our office

Monday 8:00 to 5:00 lunch 1:00 to 2:00
Tuesday 7:00 to 2:00
Wednesday 8:00 to 5:00 lunch 1:00 to 2:00
Thursday 7:00 to 2:00