Procedures – Periodontal Disease – Diagnosis

As part of your routine dental checkup, you may undergo a periodontal examination. During this, your dentist or dental hygienist may diagnose you with periodontal disease.

A small dental tool known as a periodontal probe measures the gap between the teeth and gums, Sulcus. A healthy sulcus is indicated by measurement of three millimeters or less and no bleeding occurs. Deeper sulcus could be a sign of periodontal disease. As the condition worsens, the sulcus grows deeper.

Sulcus measurements, bleeding, inflammation, and tooth movement are signs dentist and hygienist seek to diagnose the following:


The early stage of gum disease is gingivitis. Growth of plaques and bacteria begin to irritate the gums, causing them to become painful and to bleed.


Plaque buildup progresses into tartar. The continual development of plaque and tartar causes the gums to recede. Sulcus becomes deeper and packed with bacteria. Gums remain irritated and inflamed. Mild bone loss may also be noticed.

Advanced Periodontitis

Gums, bone and periodontal ligament begin to decay. The lack of tooth support may lead to extreme tooth mobility and loss. Moderate to severe bone loss may also be noticed.