Chronic periodontitis is caused by poor oral hygiene and plaque build-up. Good oral hygiene at home removes plaque but it reforms quickly and can harden under the gumline into calculus (tartar) that can only be removed with a professional cleaning.

If left untreated, pockets develop between the gums and teeth that become deeper and fill with bacteria. This causes destruction of gum and bone as periodontitis becomes advanced, and the chronic inflammation puts your entire immune system under strain.