Have you noticed any bleeding or tenderness in your gums? You might have periodontal disease. Understanding the causes, cures, and prevention of gum disease is critical for keeping your mouth healthy and preventing significant health concerns.
What Is Periodontal Disease?
Periodontal disease, one of the most prevalent causes of tooth decay, is a bacterial infection and inflammation of the gums, bones, and ligaments surrounding your teeth. Gingivitis is the tiniest and most common gum disease in its earliest stages. As the disease progresses, the gums become red, swollen, and painful. This causes the teeth’s supporting tissues and bone begin to deteriorate.
The most advanced stage of the disease is periodontitis. The gums peel away from the teeth at this stage, creating spaces between the teeth and the gums. These pockets subsequently fill with plaque, tartar, and germs, facilitating the spread of the illness. After only 8-12 weeks, the teeth might become loose, brittle, and more sensitive to hot and cold meals and beverages.
Ways to Prevent Periodontal Disease
1. Brush and Floss Daily
Proper brushing and flossing are vital to preventing gum disease and tooth decay. Make sure you brush your teeth with fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush every morning and night. Brushing and flossing your teeth can also maintain your gums healthy and prevent them from spreading and becoming more prone to illness.
2. Visit the Dentist Regularly
Regular dental exams are necessary because they allow your dentist to detect issues before they become serious. Your dentist will examine your mouth and teeth for abnormalities during your appointments.
Make an appointment with your dentist every six months for a thorough cleaning and checkup. During a dental cleaning, your dentist will remove gum disease from your teeth and gums.
3. Avoid Smoking or Chewing Tobacco
Smoking, chewing tobacco, or any other form of smoking can lead to periodontal disease. Smoking and chewing tobacco can irritate the gums and make them more susceptible to infection. They can also hasten the receding of the gums.
Whatever you do, don’t smoke or chew tobacco if you have gum disease. Smoking or chewing tobacco will only make the condition worse. It will put you at greater risk of having severe gum and mouth problems.
4. Avoid Stress
Many times, if you are stressed and sleep-deprived, you’ll have trouble remembering to practice proper brushing and flossing techniques. Or, you might not have enough time to make it to your dentist for regular checkups.
So if you want to prevent periodontal disease, it’s essential to ensure you are practicing good dental hygiene and can make time to see your dentist regularly.
5. Consider Your Diet
It is essential to be careful when you eat. Spicy and highly acidic foods can irritate your gums and worsen your periodontal disease. Limit these foods and eat a balanced diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy grains, and lean meats.
Also, you should avoid sucking on hard candies or chewing gum because they can stick to your teeth, create cavities, and lead to gum disease.
The risk of having periodontal disease is annoying, but good dental insurance may help alleviate financial stress. If left untreated, it can also put you at risk of developing other major health problems.
Thankfully, you can prevent the infection and obtain the medication you need to reverse it if you follow the guidelines above.
Shallowford Family Dental can help you as soon as you need a family dentist in Chattanooga! For decades, we have practiced here in Chattanooga and are happy to serve our community with devotion and care. Our four dentists have nearly 75 years of combined dental expertise. Make a dental appointment with us now!