Dental anxiety and phobia can be difficult at the best of times. Often it means that routine dental check ups are missed. As problems develop, the fear is re-enforced, the issue is often ignored, and progresses to become a significant.
Gum disease is so easily prevented, but once it has a foothold, it can be difficult to stop and maintain. Your gums will never fully recover, and once you have gum disease, you are always at a high risk of it quickly progressing again. Often gum disease is silent, causing few symptoms beyond perhaps minor bleeding that can be intermittent.
As the gum disease advances, the supporting architecture of the tooth is dismantled, supporting bone is removed, and the disease can accelerate very quickly. Teeth can start to move position, twisting, moving out of alignment, spaces start to appear, and the teeth will get longer. Infections will develop within the gums, causing a bad taste and smell due to the pus and bacteria, and teeth will loosen, and eating will start to become more and more difficult.
There is hope.
In the first instance, it is better to stop the gum disease from developing - regular dental check ups and visits to the hygienists, coupled with an excellent home oral hygiene routine will help. the frequency of attendance to the hygienist varies for individuals, from 3 months to 6 monthly.
If you have any of the symptoms of gum disease, a periodontist (dentist specialising in gums) can help. Detailed records are taken, and a treatment plan and maintenance program are set out. It is then in your hands to stop the disease from progressing again - stick to the maintenance program, step up your cleaning techniques, and attend the hygienist every 3 months and the periodontitis as required for reviews and treatment (as needed).