March 15, 2017
Did you know that almost half of Americans have some form of gum disease? Although this condition is common, it shouldn’t be taken lightly – especially since it can lead to tooth loss. So, how can you tell if you have this ailment, and what can you do about if you do? With these tips from Bear Branch Family Dentistry, your dentist in The Woodlands, you can find out everything you need to know about gum disease. Learn the signs and symptoms, how to prevent it, and how to treat it, in this post.
What Is Gum Disease?
Dr. Lauren Smits and Dr. Kelly LeBlanc explain that this is an inflammatory condition of the gingiva (gums) which affects the soft and hard structures that support your teeth. It progresses through three stages, and is generally caused by the presence of bacteria from food (especially sweets) in the mouth.
What Are the Signs & Symptoms Of Gum Disease?
Gum disease has three stages: gingivitis, periodontitis, and advanced periodontitis. The symptoms include:
- Red, swollen, or tender gums
- Bleeding while brushing, flossing, or eating food
- Receding gum lines
- Spaces between the teeth
- Buildup of pus between teeth and gums
- Bad breath or a bad taste in the mouth
- Teeth that don’t fit together when you bite
- Chronic bad breath
- Gums that pull away from the teeth
- Sores in the mouth
- Loose or misaligned teeth
How Can I Prevent Gum Disease?
Our team recommends the following strategies to prevent gum disease:
- 2×2 – Brush gently twice a day for two minutes. Remember: brushing harder, but for a shorter amount of time, doesn’t give your teeth the care they need. Use the timer on your phone or play some music to keep yourself on track.
- Floss Properly – Sounds easy, right? Floss properly by taking your time and gently sliding the floss in between teeth. Move the floss in a C-shape to get the gums on both sides of each tooth. Don’t snap the floss between teeth – this can cause trauma to your gums.
- Eat Healthy – Sugary foods and beverages exacerbate gum problems, so cut down on sweets, including drinks like sodas and fruit juices. Switch to water, and enjoy veggies, high-protein refreshments, and dairy – say cheese, since this is especially great at protecting teeth.
- See Your Dentist – Even if you eat right and take great care of your teeth at home, you still need to see us at least twice a year. We’ll always check for gum disease, and we’ll give you additional tips on how to keep this problem at bay when you visit us in our office.
How Can Bear Branch Family Dentistry Treat My Gum Disease?
Depending on the stage of gum disease you’re suffering from, we have a variety of ways to treat this condition. We can use mouthrinses to get ahead of the problem in the early stages of gingivitis. If things progress to periodontitis or more advanced stages of the disease, we can remove troubled tissue and promote the regeneration of healthy gums. And, if you’ve lost a tooth due to poor gum health, don’t despair – a lost tooth doesn’t have to stay that way with our dental implants.
So, if you’re afflicted with gum disease in The Woodlands, or you want to prevent this problem from occurring, schedule your appointment with Bear Branch Family Dentistry today!
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