Top 10 Ways to Stop Gum Disease
Gum disease can become a real problem if nothing is done about it. Even in the information age, it is still the number one reason why adults are losing their teeth. This disease, periodontitis, does not need to be a problem for most people, which mean you should be able to keep your smile looking good for many years. Protecting your smile cannot be done by accident, but you can take a proactive approach to overcome periodontitis.
You can help prevent gum disease with the following 10 steps:
1. Brush Your Teeth – This is the basic step to keeping your teeth looking good. You need to have a good toothbrush that has soft bristles (replace every three months) and brush at least twice a day. This will help to remove the food particles, the bacteria, and the acid from your teeth.
If you do not brush often enough, the plaque that forms on your teeth every day will eventually harden and become tartar. Once that occurs, you cannot remove it with your toothbrush and it gives the harmful bacteria access to your gums. This is the start of gum disease. Only a dentist can remove tartar from your teeth and remove the bacteria at this point.
2. Floss Daily – Flossing should be done at least once a day to remove the food particles, bacteria, and acid from between your teeth. Your toothbrush cannot reach this space, which makes flossing necessary. Dental floss also helps you remove bacteria that are slightly below the gum line.
If you already have gum disease – gingivitis – it is very important that you keep on brushing and flossing. By being consistent with it, you may be able to eliminate it while it is still in the early stages.
3. Eat a Healthy Diet – When you eat healthy, you provide your gums and teeth with the minerals and nutrients they need to stay healthy. Your gums need certain vitamins to strengthen the immune system and your teeth also need nutrients (calcium, phosphates, and vitamins D and A) to replace the minerals the acid leaches away daily.
4. Reduce Your Sugar Intake – The bacteria that cause cavities and gum disease feed on sugar. Whenever it consumes sugar, it produces the acid that causes these problems. To protect your teeth more, cut back on sugary foods and drinks.
5. Drink More Water – If you do not have time to brush after eating, swishing your mouth out with water will help remove the sugar from your teeth. It will also help you have more saliva – which also helps to remove the bacteria and acid from your teeth.
6. Stop Smoking – People who smoke are much more likely to get gum disease. The nicotine reduces the flow of blood to the gums, which also reduces the nutrients that they get. The gums will start to recede because the tissue is dying, and the lack of nutrients also means a weaker immune system in your gums to fight the bacteria. Smokeless tobacco and e-cigs also use nicotine.
7. Reduce Stress – When you are under stress, it reduces your immune system's ability to fight the bacteria that cause gum disease. This not only makes gum disease more likely, but it also means that it will spread faster.
8. Avoid Grinding Your Teeth – Teeth grinding will not only damage your teeth, but it could lead to placing excess force on your gums. This can damage them and increase the rate that they are destroyed.
9. Evaluate Your Medicine – Some medications will cause your gums to bleed, especially if they thin your blood. Many medicines will also cause dry mouth, which means you are much more likely to have cavities and gum disease.
10. See Your Dentist Regularly – Your dentist can spot gum disease when it starts – if you go regularly. This will enable you to get treatment quickly. The dentist can also spot other health problems since many of them show early signs in your mouth.
Symptoms of Periodontitis
Gum disease, especially periodontitis, is easy to identify. The more mild form – gingivitis – is identified by bleeding gums and red or inflamed gums. As it progresses to become a periodontal disease, you will likely have the following gum disease symptoms:
Red and inflamed gums
Pus at the gum line
Pockets forming on the gums
Pain when you bite.
Gum disease treatment in the early stages is very important. You need the help of a dentist to get rid of it, which will include medications and various dental procedures – depending on how advanced it has become.
Preventing gum disease is important for the health of your mouth and beautiful smile. Gum disease treatment can be given to those who have it, and regular checkups and preventive dentistry can be given to all members of the family. Dr. Kumar T. Vadivel, DDS, FDS RCS, MS, a Board Certified Periodontist, can provide the oral care needed. He offers a wide range of dental services for all ages and accepts most dental health plans. His dental offices are located in the Carrollton, TX, and Grapevine, TX areas. For a consultation or dental checkup, you can contact his office today at (817) 756-8578.