You Can’t Have A Healthy Mouth Without Healthy Gums
If you care about your oral health, then you need to care about more than just your teeth. Gum disease can present serious problems, and it has connections to your overall health as well.
The best approach to dealing with gum disease is to take charge of the situation. This means working to prevent it, and part of that should be regular dental cleanings, which you can get at Clearwater Dental Associates.
During your routine cleanings and exams, we will be watching for signs of gum disease. If needed, we can provide gum disease treatments too at our dentist office in Clearwater, FL.
Today, we want to discuss the signs and symptoms of gum disease and what you should be doing to fight it.
Do You Have Gum Disease?
You might, and if you don’t have it now, there is good chance that you could in the future. The American Dental Hygienists Association reported that 80 percent of Americans will develop gum disease at come point in their lives.
The bacteria that cause gum disease, which is also known as periodontal disease, are already present in your mouth. All they need is an opportunity to cause an infection.
For now, we want you to learn the symptoms of the different kinds of gum disease.
The mild form of gum disease is called gingivitis. Here are its symptoms:
▸ Gums that bleed when you brush or floss
▸ Gums that look redder than usual
▸ Gums that look swollen
Some people mistakenly believe that it’s OK for their gums to bleed. The reality is that this is your body letting you know that your gums are infected. Healthy gums should look pink and feel firm to the touch.
We will talk in a bit about what you can do to prevent and treat gingivitis in a moment. For now, let’s assume you ignore the symptoms above.
This could lead to the advanced gum disease called periodontitis. Its symptoms include:
▸ Gums that bleed easily
▸ Gums that feel sore or tender
▸ Bad breath or a bad taste that won’t go away
▸ Gums that are separating from your teeth
▸ Pus leaking from your gums
▸ Teeth that feel loose
Did you know that gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in the United States? Many people don’t, which may be why not enough people take their gum health as seriously as they should.
If you are showing symptoms of gum disease, we encourage you to contact our dentists in Clearwater, FL, as soon as possible. Call (727) 373-6628 to find out if you should make an appointment.
Combatting Gum Disease
We’ve all heard the adage about an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure. We also know that it’s easier to keep your home clean if you do a little bit every day rather than letting dirt and clutter pile up.
Both of these ideas come into play with regard to gum disease.
As we mentioned earlier, the bacteria that cause periodontal problems are already in your mouth. Every day, they multiply. This is why you also need to do things to remove as many bacteria as possible every day.
Namely, you need to brush your teeth (twice a day) and floss between your teeth and gums (daily). Brushing your teeth for two minutes at a time is a great way to remove bacteria and plaque from the exposed surfaces of your teeth.
Flossing is how you clean the spaces between your teeth and gums that your toothbrush can’t reach. Flossing is also how you remove small bits of food that bacteria can use to create acids that can eat away at the enamel on your teeth or lead to gum infections.
You also should visit Clearwater Dental Associates at least every six months for professional dental cleanings and examinations. We will remove any plaque or tartar that you may have missed.
We also will be watching for signs of gum disease. Early detection leads to early treatment, and early treatment is more effective and less invasive. For example, scaling and root planing are often enough to remove the infection without requiring surgery.
Make Your Appointment Soon
If you suspect that you may have gum disease, please make an appointment as soon as possible. If you want to prevent gum disease, then you should schedule a visit to Clearwater Dental Associates, too.
To reach us, call (727) 373-6628 or fill out our online form.