If you have recently visited your hygienist, you may recall hearing numbers like “424” or “323.” Do you know what those numbers are linked too? We are going to go over what your hygienist means by this and how it diagnoses gum disease. In last month’s blog, we defined gum disease, or periodontal disease, as an infection and inflammation that affects the tissues and bone that support your teeth. To diagnose gum disease, your hygienist starts by measuring the health of your gums with a “pokey” thing, then, looks at the health of the jaw bone via x-rays to determine the stage, or severity. These are measured in stages from 1 to 4, with 4 being the most severe. Additionally, they will determine how many teeth are affected, where it is located in the mouth, and whether the progression of your disease is slow, moderate or rapid. In 2017, changes in regulations now allow clinicians the ability to provide a more customized treatment plan based on the condition of your gums and teeth. Some of the changes include: diagnosing different types of gum disease and the classification with dental implants.Now that you know what the numbers mean listen to see how healthy your gums are at your next hygiene appointment! Do you have more questions about your gum health? Having an informed conversation with your hygienist is key to maintaining a healthy smile! Call our office at 303-625-7997 to schedule your appointment.