Gum disease is one of the most common obstacles to good oral health out there. In fact, at least half of adults over the age of 30 suffer from some form of gum disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
But thankfully gum disease is highly preventable, with methods that are straightforward and easy for most of us to perform. If you’re worried that gum disease is an issue for you, here’s what you can do to fight it.
What is Gum Disease?
So – what exactly is gum disease? Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease is the term for inflammation of the gums, which if untreated can spread to the supporting bone structure. This inflammation is caused by infection of these soft tissues, which is caused by the buildup of plaque in the mouth.
Some signs you should notice as an indicator of gum disease include persistent bad breath, swollen gums that are tender or easily bleed when brushing, loose teeth, extreme sensitivity to hot or cold beverages, and pain when chewing.
Ways to Prevent Gum Disease
As stated, gum disease is preventable. Here are just a few of the most impactful methods of keeping your smile bright and healthy.
It may seem like a no-brainer, but it never hurts to be reminded – brush, brush, brush! You should be brushing at least twice a day with a fluoride-based toothpaste in order to keep teeth surfaces pristine. And if you’ve never tried an electric toothbrush, they can be even more effective at scouring those surfaces.
Not even an electric toothbrush can reach every nook and cranny between your teeth. Gentle flossing at least once a day is an excellent way to deal with persistent food particles that stick around even after brushing.
Visit the Dentist Regularly
A twice-a-year regular cleaning at your dentist office is one of the most effective ways of combating gum disease. The professionals in Dr. Lordo’s office have the experience and tools necessary to clean your mouth at a level that just can’t be attained at home. Along with a thorough cleaning, a fluoride treatment will help your teeth to stay strong and healthy.
Chew More Gum
In between brushing, chewing a sugar-free will help to keep your mouth generating saliva to flush away food particles and plaque. Try to find gum with the natural sweetener Xylitol, which will promote a natural pH balance in your mouth.
Address Issues Like Crooked Teeth
Addressing any orthodontic issues you (or your kids) may have is also important to preventing gum disease. Bacteria and food particles can collect more easily in the gaps between misaligned teeth. Getting those braces is more than just a cosmetic decision.
Be Aware of Risk Factors
And if you fall into certain demographics, you should consider visiting the dentist more than the recommended two trips a year. Tobacco users, those with a weakened immune system due to medication or illness, the elderly, diabetics, and pregnant women should all take extra care when addressing their oral health.
How Dr. Lordo’s Office Can Help
Fighting gum disease may be a straightforward task, but it’s not one you have to do on your own. Our professionals at Dr. Lordo’s Worthington office are happy to help keep your smile looking its very best. We are currently offering a special cleaning regimen for new patients – give us a call at 614-310-4522 or visit us online to schedule your first appointment.