Signs of gum disease include bleeding, tender, and sore gums, bad breath, loose teeth, and gum tissue that has become separated by teeth. Left untreated, gum disease can wreak significant havoc on your health. The good news, however, is that it can be easily treated when caught in the early stages, and in most cases, it’s reversible. Gum disease is also a highly preventable condition. Here’s how you can minimize your chances of getting it.
Brush and Floss Regularly
Gum disease occurs as the result of buildup of plaque and bacteria at and under the gum line. Brushing after every meal and flossing at least once per day will help keep both teeth and gums healthy. Flossing removes food particles from between the teeth that toothbrushes can’t access. It also helps to swish mouthwash or even just water around in your mouth.
Use a Toothpaste With Fluoride
Make sure the toothpaste you’re using contains fluoride as well as carries the seal of acceptance from the American Dental Association. It’s important to brush your teeth for at least two minutes twice per day — most people don’t brush nearly long enough.
Use an Antibacterial Mouthwash
If you’re already experiencing sore gums or other signs that you may be developing gum disease, talk with your dentist about using an antibacterial mouthwash.
Limit Sugary Snacks and Beverages
Sugary foods and beverages increase plaque on the teeth and gum line, so avoid them as much as possible. Soda, hard candy, and sweetened coffee drinks are particularly harmful to the teeth and gums if consumed on a regular basis. However, you can minimize the damage sugary beverages do by drinking them through a straw.
Avoid Using Tobacco Products
Cigarettes and chewing tobacco both contribute to gum disease as well as play a substantial role in the development of cancer cells.
Schedule Regular Cleanings
Having your teeth cleaned on a regular basis helps ensure that your teeth are as free from plaque and bacteria buildup as possible. Your dentist will also perform a thorough examination at this time and advise a course of treatment if any signs of gum disease are detected.
Please feel free to reach out to us for more information on maintaining good oral health.