The risk of gum disease is always present.
The bacteria that cause periodontal disease live in our mouths. This is why everyone should remain committed to preventing gum disease on a daily basis.
At Masterpiece Smiles, we want to do our part to support your efforts. We do this by encouraging good oral hygiene habits and by providing professional cleanings and exams at our dentist office in Tulsa, OK.
February is Gum Disease Awareness Month. Today, we want to focus on things you can do to reduce your risk of suffering the consequences gum disease.
Simple Steps To Fight Gum Disease
The American Dental Hygienists Association has estimated that up to 80 percent of Americans will have periodontal disease at some point in their lives. That’s 4 out of every 5 people.
Knowing this, we want all our patients to have the knowledge they need to prevent gum infections or to treat them in the earliest stages. Some of these are things you may already be doing, and some of them may be new. Either way, knowledge is power in fighting gum disease.
➤ Be consistent about your daily oral hygiene routine.
As we mentioned earlier, the bacteria that cause gum disease are already in your mouth. They multiply daily, which means you need to do things to remove at many as possible each day, too.
Brushing your teeth twice a day is the first way you fight back. Scrubbing your teeth on all sides with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste will remove many bacteria.
The second part of this routine is equally important. It’s also something that less than half of Americans actually do. You need to floss between your teeth daily.
Using dental floss or another interdental cleaner daily is how you remove plaque and food particles from hard to reach places. This includes the spaces between your teeth and below your gumline.
➤ Go to the dentist for regular cleanings and examinations.
Many of us make the effort to do preventive maintenance on our vehicles. Is your oral health less important than your car or truck?
At Masterpiece Smiles, you can have your mouth cleaned by a dental professional. This will remove any plaque or tartar buildup that you may have missed. It also gives our professionals and opportunity to examine your mouth for signs of gum disease and other oral health issues.
If we see anything, we will let you know. We also can advise you on what can be done to treat your periodontal disease quickly and effectively. When needed, that may include the non-surgical gum disease treatments.
Again, you can schedule cleaning at our Tulsa, OK, dentist office by calling 918-925-9687.
➤ Know your risk factors.
Anyone can develop gum disease, but some people are more likely to have it than others. If you have any risk factors, you need to know for your own sake.
Poor oral hygiene certainly raises your odds of having gum disease and other problems.
Tobacco use of any kind can be extremely damaging as well. For example, smokers are more than twice as likely than nonsmokers to have gum disease, according to the National Institutes of Health. Avoiding or quitting tobacco can go a long way.
People with diabetes are more likely to develop gum disease as well. The reasons are not entirely clear. One hypothesis is that people with diabetes are more likely to have dry mouth, which also increases your risk for gum disease.
Men are more likely to have gum disease than women. Nevertheless, women face an increased risk when they are going through hormone changes. This includes puberty, pregnancy, and menopause.
➤ Learn the symptoms of gum disease.
One of the best things you can do is learn to recognize when your gums may be infected. Healthy gums typically look pink and feel firm to the touch.
Infected gums can feel swollen or look redder than usual. Infected gums also bleed when you brush or floss your teeth.
If the infection is not treated, your gums can begin to feel sore or tender. You may notice your gums receding, and you may have bad breath that doesn’t go away.
In the latter stages, your teeth can feel loose or even fall out.
If you notice any symptoms of gum disease, our Masterpiece Smile team is ready to help. We can answer questions about what you can do, and we can provide treatment when needed.
To learn more or to make an appointment at our dentist office in Tulsa, OK, call 918-925-9687 or fill out our online form.