Gum disease is a serious issue that can lead to tooth loss and other health problems if left untreated.
In this blog post, we will discuss three ways to prevent gum disease from occurring in the first place. We will also talk about the different types of gum disease, common causes of gum disease, and warning signs that you may have gum disease.
Types of Gum Disease
There are two main types of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis is the early stage of gum disease. It is usually caused by plaque buildup on the teeth. Plaque is a sticky film of bacteria that forms on the teeth. If plaque is not removed, it can harden and turn into tartar. Tartar is difficult to remove and can irritate the gums, causing them to become red, swollen, and bleeding.
If gingivitis is not treated, it can progress to periodontitis. Periodontitis is a more serious form of gum disease that can damage the bones and tissues that support the teeth. Periodontitis is usually caused by a combination of plaque and tartar buildup, as well as inflammation.
Common Causes of Gum Disease
Several factors can increase your risk of developing gum disease. These include:
Poor Oral Hygiene
This is the number one cause of gum disease. If you do not brush and floss your teeth regularly, plaque and tartar will build up on your teeth, which can lead to gingivitis and eventually periodontitis.
Smoking is a major risk factor for gum disease. Smoking damages the gums and makes it harder for them to fight off infection. People who smoke are more likely to develop periodontitis than those who do not smoke.
Certain dental procedures, such as tooth extractions and deep cleanings, can irritate the gums and make them more susceptible to infection.
People with diabetes are more likely to develop gum disease because they have a higher level of sugar in their saliva. This sugar feeds the bacteria in plaque, which can cause gum disease to progress more quickly.
Warning Signs of Gum Disease
There are several warning signs that you may have gum disease. These include:
- Swollen, red, or bleeding gums
- Gums that pull away from the teeth
- Bad breath
- Loose teeth
- Receding gums
If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to see a dentist as soon as possible.
Top Three Tips for Preventing Gum Disease
1. Brush Twice a Day
One of the best ways to prevent gum disease is to brush your teeth twice a day. This removes plaque and bacteria from the teeth and gums, which can help to prevent gingivitis from developing.
2. Floss Daily
Flossing is another important step in preventing gum disease. Flossing removes plaque and bacteria from between the teeth, where a toothbrush cannot reach. It is important to floss every day to keep your teeth and gums healthy.
3. See Your Dentist Regularly
It is important to see your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings. During a cleaning, your dentist will remove plaque and tartar from your teeth. This can help to prevent gum disease from developing or progressing.
By following these easy steps, you can prevent gum disease before it starts. If you are already experiencing symptoms of gum disease, it is important to see a dentist as soon as possible to begin treatment.