Gum disease starts as an inflammation of the gum line. If left untreated, this disease can negatively influence the health of the bone that supports and surrounds your teeth. This can lead to gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis.
There are many variables that can heighten your risk of gum disease; some of these factors include smoking or chewing tobacco, crooked teeth that are hard to keep clean, diabetes, pregnancy, some prescription medications, genetics, and poor oral hygiene. Common symptoms of gum disease can include:
- Loose teeth
- A bad taste in the mouth or persistent bad breath
- Gums that recede or move away from the tooth
- Pus that is visible that surrounds the gums and teeth
- Red, swollen, and tender or bleeding gums
Preventing Gum Disease
A build-up of plaque along and under the gum line is the culprit behind gum disease. Plaque can lead to an infection of connective tissues, bone, and gums. Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease and can be seen through signs such as redness, tenderness, slight amounts of blood when brushing the teeth, persistent bad breath, and inflammation. Gingivitis is generally painless, so it can be hard to diagnose on your own.
So how can you prevent gum disease? Developing a good oral care routine is necessary and wholly recommended. The tried-and-true techniques for gum disease prevention are listed as follows:
- Always brush twice per day. This can include in the morning, after meals, and before bedtime.
- Flossing can reach bits of food and plaque between and behind your teeth that the toothbrush may not be able to reach. It’s a good idea to floss once per day.
- Get your teeth regularly cleaned by a professional and always follow up with your dentist regularly.
- A toothpaste should always have an ADA seal of acceptance and contain fluoride.
- It’s time to quit smoking cigarettes. There is a strong correlation between cigarette smoking and gum disease, as the ingredients and chemicals inside cigarettes damage the gums and make it more difficult to fight off gum infections.
- To prevent plaque build-up, it’s a good idea to rinse your mouth with mouthwash at least once a day.
Gum Disease Statistics
There is a large prevalence of periodontal disease in the American population. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one out of every two adults aged 30 and over has periodontal disease. The percentage for Americans aged 65 and older is around 70%. This chronic inflammatory disease affects the gum tissue and bone that support the teeth and it is also associated with other disease that are caused by chronic inflammation, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
We are hoping that this will drive public policy in the future, as these numbers are startling. Preventing gum disease is simple; the only issue seems to be raising awareness of the issue and the solution towards it.
Family Dentistry New Jersey
Follow these tips to help prevent gum disease! Gingivitis is completely preventable, so make sure to follow these tips daily!
Is it time for a regular cleaning? Dr. Bruce Freund has been named one of the best dentists in New Jersey and is here to help keep your smile and gums healthy. We offer dental cleaning in New Jersey, dental crowns, pediatric dentistry, laser dentistry, and more! To schedule an appointment with our staff, give us a call at (201) 568-0606.