Acute necrotising ulcerative gingivitis
If you have acute necrotising ulcerative gingivitis (ANUG) and it's not treated, it can cause more severe complications.
The infection can spread to all areas of your gums and the alveolar bone surrounding your teeth.
This can lead to:
- the gums between your teeth being completely destroyed
- large ulcers (open sores) leaving permanent holes in your gums
- loose and unstable teeth
If ANUG is not properly treated the first time you have it, you're more likely to have recurring cases in the future.
This can cause persistent bad breath (halitosis) and bleeding gums, as well as gradually receding gums.
In rare cases, ANUG can lead to gangrene affecting the lips and cheeks. This occurs when tissue starts to die and waste away.
If you develop gangrene, you may need to have the dead tissue removed.
Gum disease has also been associated with an increased risk for a number of other health conditions, including:
- cardiovascular disease
- lung infections
- premature labour and having a baby with a low birth weight if you're affected during pregnancy
But while people with gum disease may have an increased risk of these problems, there's not currently any clear evidence that gum disease directly causes them.