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Gum disease leads to different signs and symptoms that become apparent when we brush our teeth, talk, or eat. When this disease evolves or worsens, these symptoms will manifest in a more noticeable way as dental mobility or “loose teeth”. However, this mobility is not only caused by a disease in the gums but also by other factors or conditions. Thus, it is vital to differentiate the cause. At Channel Island Family Dental, this is our job. Our dentists in Oxnard, Santa Paula, Ventura, and Port Hueneme, will guide you to a timely diagnosis and treatment.


Healthy teeth normally move since they are not attached to the bone; rather, they are joined by the periodontal ligament, which provides the tooth with a certain degree of mobility. This mobility is a little higher in the anterior teeth but when it occurs, it is minimal, many times not even perceivable. When this mobility is increased, we suspect some type of pathology or disease.


As noted, the cause of loose teeth arises from different factors:

Gum disease: because our body responds to the presence of microorganisms (bacteria), inflammation can occur in the gums. In turn, the bone surrounding our teeth will gradually loosen due to the accumulation of bacteria, causing a loss of support and, as a result, dental mobility. If not treated in time, it will cause the loss of teeth.

Infection: A cavity that progresses and reaches the pulp, and is not treated in time, will trigger an infection at the apical level (tip of the tooth). This infection will also affect the bone, producing tooth mobility.

Fracture: Receiving a blow or being in an accident can cause a fracture. The tooth may become divided, giving the appearance of dental mobility. It is often accompanied by pain, and many times it causes the loss of the tooth.

Bruxism: This stress-related disease produces a clenching of the teeth, given with excessive force, thereby causing an overload on the teeth. This will trigger a widening of the fibers of the periodontal ligament that joins the teeth to the bone, producing mobility.

Systemic diseases: There are also general diseases associated with dental mobility that present within a clinical picture. Within these diseases are Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Down Syndrome, diabetes mellitus, osteoporosis, etc.


The American Dental Association (ADA) defines gum disease as an infection of the tissues that surround and support the teeth. This disease is caused by an accumulation of bacterial plaque (BIOFILM). It is an invisible layer attached to the teeth and gums and made up of a large amount of bacteria. These bacteria will produce waste that damage both teeth and gums. 

Gum disease is curable in its initial stage, where you only see bleeding and inflammation, but if you do not practice good oral hygiene, these bacteria will continue to accumulate and cause even more damage to the point of losing teeth. Due to excessive dental mobility and the loss of support structures, the importance of going to the dentist in a timely manner is vital.


The presence of loose teeth is a way to identify gum disease in its most serious stage, but it is difficult to recover the loss of structures such as bone. Treatment is based on stopping this loss. In a 2020 report, the World Health Organization (WHO) tells us that severe gum disease (severe periodontitis) can cause tooth loss. Is seen frequently since it affects almost 10% of the world’s population.


  • Visit the Dentist: It is important to visit the dentist at least twice a year for a general evaluation of the state of both our teeth and our gums, and to be able to undergo out timely treatments.
  • Oral hygiene: Much of the responsibility for the state of our teeth and gums depends on us, since proper oral hygiene eliminates the presence of bacterial plaque. It eliminates the risk of suffering from gum disease and therefore the appearance of pathological tooth mobility.
  • Use of mouthwash: Mouthwashes may contain antiseptics that will help to eliminate bacterial plaque combined with an adequate brushing technique.
  • Elimination of retentive factors: The presence of inadequate restorations may become food retention centers and, consequently, sites for the appearance and the accumulation of bacterial plaque. These retentions hinder proper oral hygiene and over time will lead to periodontal disease.
  • Dental prophylaxis: This treatment carried out in the office is of vital importance since it helps to eliminate dental plaque and tartar attached to the teeth that cannot be eliminated only with brushing. Their elimination will favor the reinsertion of the fibers of the periodontal ligament and also reduce tooth mobility.
  • Others: Depending upon the severity and progression of the disease, the dentist will opt for an adequate treatment to stop the advancement of tooth mobility.


If you have any questions about this topic or another, do not hesitate to contact us or visit us at Channel Island Family Dental.

At Channel Island Family Dental, we strive to make a timely diagnosis. In addition, our  dentists in Oxnard, Santa Paula, Ventura, Newbury Park, and Port Hueneme will guide you toward the best treatment to restore your best smile.

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