While periodontitis is a specific condition, there are various periodontitis classification categories that help identify the type of infection when being described among dental professionals. These classifications usually describe to what degree the infection has advanced, and how much of the mouth has been affected.
Mild Periodontitis/Early Periodontitis
This is the earliest form of periodontitis. Clinical findings show mild gum detachment with mild bleeding. There may be minimal bone loss evident on dental X-rays.
Moderate periodontitis exists when gum pockets measure between four and six millimeters in depth and there is clinical evidence of bone loss evident on the X-rays.
Severe periodontitis involves advanced bone loss with gum pockets deeper than six millimeters found during a dental examination. Bone has often receded so much that the furcation – division – of the back molar teeth are involved.
This is the most common form of periodontitis. It is related to the amount of bacterial biofilm and calculus on the tooth surfaces.
Acute infections may affect only a localized area, but are often painful and quickly advanced. Acute infections may also involve periapical abscess – around the apex of the root – of the tooth due to the invasive condition.
When periodontitis is limited to just a few teeth in the mouth without having spread to other teeth it is considered localized. You can still have localized aggressive periodontitis, so being localized doesn’t simply mean it is minor.
Generalized periodontitis affects several areas throughout the mouth. It may be a more mild form or can be generalized aggressive periodontitis.
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