Periodontics (Gum Disease)
Unfortunately, it’s all too easy for people to neglect the proper care of their teeth and gums. Some people do not brush their teeth and gums on a regular basis. Or they may consume food and drinks which are bad for their dental health. Or it’s possible that they engage in sports or activities which pose risks for their mouths, without wearing the needed mouth guard, and so on. This helps to explain why many people struggle with such things as tooth problems and gum disease.
Another problem is the fact that many people ignore or don’t take seriously existing symptoms of gum disease. They just hope that the problem will go away over time. Or they tell themselves that it’s not really a big deal. But the truth is that gum disease, while it can be minor in some cases, can also pose serious issues for a person’s dental and overall health.
There is a certain flow to gum disease. At first, a person will experience inflammation of the gums. This is caused by the fact that there is a build up of problematic bacteria in that person’s mouth. There are several factors which contribute to this kind of build up. For example, if the person does not have good dental and oral hygiene habits, then this will contribute to gum disease. If the person is a smoker, then this will also make the situation worse, and so on. At this point, the bacteria is continuing to increase.
Later, things will get to the point where the manner in which the teeth are connected to the gums will already be affected. This is because the bacteria are already having a serious effect on the gums and bone. There is growing space or there are larger gaps between the gums and the teeth. A person may notice that the gums have been receding. If left unchecked, the person’s gum disease may reach the point where there will be serious tooth loss.
Gum disease is a serious thing, and it truly is best if serious tooth loss can be avoided altogether. There are proactive steps that a person can do to help avoid gum disease. For instance, one of the most important things really is to schedule regular visits to the dentist. Ideally, the person will have his or her teeth cleaned by a dentist at least twice in a year. This will help to ensure that any plaque which is beginning to accumulate on that person’s teeth isn’t allowed to increase. The dentist should also be able to advise you if he or she notices any signs of existing gum disease, as well as potential dental interventions, if these are necessary.
You’ll also need to take steps at home to prevent gum disease. This means regular brushing of teeth, with the right toothpaste, and using the right technique. Your dentist should be able to show you how. If done right and done regularly, this will help prevent the buildup of plaque and bacteria on the surfaces and flatter areas of your teeth. At the same time, brushing alone is not enough. Unfortunately, not enough people make flossing a regular part of their days. But flossing is important to avoid gum disease. If brushing tends to work on the flatter surfaces, flossing allows you to focus on the crevices and nooks that exist among the teeth, as well as between the teeth and the gums. This is very important when it comes to reducing the chances of getting gum disease.
You will also probably want to ask around to find out if any of your family members also suffer from gum inflammation or gum disease. It’s been found that there’s a genetic component to this. So if your parent or grandparent suffered from gum disease, that will tend to increase your chances of getting it as well. If that’s the case, you’ll need to be extra vigilant. Watch out for bleeding or inflamed gums, especially after brushing your teeth. Try to notice if any of your teeth feel like they are coming loose, without having been subjected to force or trauma. If your teeth are coming loose, if your gum line is receding, or if you are experiencing any other similar issues with your gums or teeth, make sure to mention this to your dentist right away.