Brushing and flossing are daily tasks that cannot be overemphasized enough. We encourage patients every day to maintain these habits. They don’t just help prevent painful cavities, but they can also significantly decrease the risk of developing gum disease. Gum disease is a blanket term that more or less describes a continuum of infection in the gums. The first stage, gingivitis, is the only opportunity we have to course-correct. It is with prompt and consistent care at this stage that we can prevent full-blown infection known as periodontal disease. Here, we discuss why we want to do that and how it’s done.
Gum disease is far too common today than need be, considering the vast amount of data and information that is available. No adult is on their own to combat the factors that contribute to gum disease, either. Friendly, experienced dentists like Dr. Siegelman and Dr. Ng provide the personal care that is needed to keep infection at bay. But first, we must know the signs that alert us to the need for a little more oral care.
Warning signs of gingivitis include:
- Gums that bleed while flossing or brushing
- Receding gums
- Puffy or swollen gums
- Purple or dark red gums
- Gums that are painful or tender when touched
- Persistent bad breath
- Increased tooth sensitivity
- Development of spaces in between teeth
- Loose teeth
How Do You Get Gum Disease?
There are a few things that make gum disease possible. The first is the bacteria that naturally live in the mouth. They aren’t necessarily bad on their own. But what happens is that, when we consume refined carbohydrates and sugars, the bacteria in the mouth flourish. They eat what we eat, basically, and when they do, they excrete acidic waste. This waste, along with food debris, saliva, and the bacteria themselves, forms a biofilm called plaque. You’ve probably heard of dental plaque before but didn’t realize what it is made of. Now that you do, you may be even more motivated to reduce its presence in your mouth.
When asking how we get gum disease, we also gain some insights into how not to get it. Brushing and flossing daily are key. So are the semi-annual dental checkups and cleanings performed in your dentist’s office. There is also value in reducing the consumption of sugary foods and beverages.
Gum disease need not be a frightening truth about adult dental health. It can be a potential threat that is easily managed with help from our friendly staff. To schedule your appointment in our NYC sedation dentistry office, call (212) 974-8737. We make it easy to see the dentist.