February is National Gum Disease Awareness Month, and we are here for it! Working daily with gums makes us excited about creating awareness on how best to keep your gums healthy no matter what your age. When we say your smile thrives on good oral care, most patients typically think of their teeth, but the gums are just as crucial because, without them, your teeth would loosen and fall out!
The problem with gum disease (the infection of the gum tissue) is that it also is linked to general health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and pregnancy issues. Taking good care of your gums means your overall health will improve. Gum disease develops when oral bacteria thrive in the mouth. It does not take a lot of time for the bacteria to inflame the oral tissues and spread via the bloodstream, affecting the organs and other areas of your body. You can make a big difference in your tooth and gum health by brushing and flossing daily to remove this harmful bacterial film (plaque) from your teeth and gum line.
In the early stages, gum disease is referred to as gingivitis. Left unchecked, it will continually advance until you are at the stage called periodontal disease. To protect your gum health, you will need to practice effective oral hygiene care every day, followed by periodic professional dental cleanings and exams. Your biannual dental cleanings remove hardened plaque (known as tartar or calculus), which can only be removed using special dental instruments. In between visits, keep an eye out for the signs of gum disease.
Probably the most common cause of this insidious disease is chronic poor oral hygiene. Without daily intervention, oral bacteria thrive, harming your gums, teeth, and body. But neglecting your oral hygiene care is only partly responsible for inviting gum disease into your mouth. There are a variety of other conditions that can lead to disease:
So, what can you do to prevent gum disease or keep it from worsening? It is where improvements to your daily habits can make have the biggest impact:
Depending on the state of your gums, there are several solutions to get your smile back on track:
Your smile needs daily care and good habits, especially if you want to keep your teeth and gums healthy (and in place). We welcome you to call our office if you have any issues or concerns about your gums. This National Gum Disease Awareness Month, resolve to take the best care of your teeth and gums!