You may be surprised to know what problem greatly affects the oral health of many Americans. Would you be surprised to learn that tooth decay is not the number one dental issue that affects most American adults? The answer is gum disease. In fact, there is a chance that you are suffering from the effects of gum disease at this very moment and are not aware that the underlying problem is there due to its silent nature. Gum disease is a serious gum infection, accompanied by inflammation, caused by bacterial growth along the gumline and around the base of the tooth.
Two Forms of Gum Disease
Gum disease has a habit of creeping in when a patient’s oral hygiene has been lacking or it has been too long since their last dental examination in our office. There are two stages of gum disease:
This early state of gum disease is treatable when caught in a timely manner. It occurs when proper oral hygiene habits, including brushing and flossing, are lacking. It acts as a warning sign that there is a problem on the horizon if you do not improve your oral care. Warning signs of gingivitis include:
- Gums that bleed easily during brushing and flossing
- Tender or swollen gums
- Bad breath
This severe form of gum disease appears when gingivitis is not treated. The gums begin to pull away from the teeth, creating pockets full of harmful bacteria. Plaque and bacteria begin to move below the gumline causing the deterioration of the bone and, eventually, tooth loss.
How to Help Prevent Gum Disease
To prevent this disease it’s important to reevaluate the care you are giving to your mouth on a daily basis. Be sure to brush and floss daily, paying close attention to the gumline. Using mouthwash can also help flush the mouth of bacteria that is not removed during brushing and flossing. Be sure to avoid smoking and tobacco use, as it adds to the risk of gum disease.
When left untreated, gum disease will continue to worsen. If you are located in the Baldwinsville, NY area and are concerned about the state of your gums or you have not visited our office recently for an examination we encourage you to call our office to schedule an appointment today.