#1 : What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a very common condition where the gums become swollen, sore or infected. It is the major cause of about 70 percent of adult tooth loss, affecting three out of four persons at some point in their life. Periodontal diseases include gingivitis and periodontitis.
#2 : What Causes Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a result of improper oral hygiene. Our mouth is full of bacteria, that form plaque on teeth. Irregular brushing causes plaque to form and thicken around our teeth infecting our gum and finally leading to gum disease. Hard deposits called “tartar” are a result of long standing plaque that has not been removed. Tartar can only be removed by professional cleaning
#3 : Are there any other causes of Gum Disease?
Well, actually there are many other factors that lead to gum disease. Genetics, Lifestyle choice, and Daily Diet can play a major role.
If your regular diet is poor in essential vitamins and minerals, it can reduce your general body resistance to infection and hence may have an adverse effect on your gums. Tobacco users and regular smokers reportedly have more gum disease compared to non smokers, and stress can also be a cause for your poor oral health.
Diseases like Diabetes can worsen the situation. Pregnancy Gum disease is also a common issue known as “Pregnancy Gingivitis.”
#4 : Who is at risk of Gum Disease?
Anyone who does not regularly brush and have professional cleaning is at risk of gum disease. Men are more likely to develop gum disease than women; however; there is no distinction if the oral hygiene is inadequate. General body resistance reduces by age; therefore; older adults are more likely to develop gum disease than young adults or teenagers; but this is not a rule.
#5 : What Are the Warning Signs of Gum Disease?
Warning signs of gum disease include red, swollen or tender gums. Sometimes, bleeding while brushing or flossing occur. Gums that pull away from the teeth and you may also notice pus between the gum and tooth. Gum disease also causes persistent bad breath and it may cause some tenderness during chewing. The main problem is that gum disease is generally silent; you may on occasions have some slight sensitivity or tenderness; but this may be so mild that it passes unnoticed.
So, it is essential to consult a dentist when you notice any of the above signs; as prevention is always better than cure; it is better to get a regular dental check-up at least twice a year.
#6 : How Is Gum Disease Treated?
The main objective of gum treatment is to eliminate the factors causing gum disease and also to prevent any further deterioration. There are several types of treatment and only a dentist can suggest and explain to you which is more suitable after checking the current condition of your gum and teeth and ofcourse your medical history.
#7 : What about home care?
A good oral hygiene routine is crucial for the prevention of gum disease. Regular dental visits and twice daily brushing is a MUST. Flossing and cleaning between the teeth is also extremely important at least once a day.
Brushes with soft nylon bristle are the most dependable and least expensive option for anyone. Electric brushes are also a good choice. Interdental brushes (narrow and small brushes) and other interdental cleaners are great for cleaning between the recesses in the teeth. You can use it once daily. Wooden toothpicks or rubber tips are are not commonly recommended.
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