In gingivitis, the gums become red, swollen and can bleed easily. It’s a mild form of gum disease that can usually be reversed with daily brushing and flossing, and regular cleaning by a dentist or dental hygienist. When gingivitis is left untreated, it can advance to periodontitis.
In a person with periodontitis, the inner layer of the gum and bone pull away from the teeth and form pockets. These small spaces between teeth and gums collect debris and can become infected, which starts to break down the bone and connective tissue that hold teeth in place.