This article discusses gum disease and how it can be prevented by following five simple rules and lifestyle choices.
When it comes to oral health care, the focus can lie pretty heavily upon the aesthetics of one’s teeth. But the dentist will tell you that there are really two components to a beautiful smile… teeth and gums! You may have the pearliest whites around, but no amount of sparkle can distract from gums that are inflamed, swollen and/or infected. Understanding the importance of looking after both your teeth and gums is fundamental if you are to maintain a lifelong oral health care regime that will preserve your beautiful smile and keep bad breath away!
Ask the Dentist : A Look at Gum Disease
Periodontal (gum) disease is a widespread problem in the United States in spite of our advanced technology and awareness of oral health and hygiene. The greater majority of the population still neglects to floss their teeth everyday and see the dentist twice a year, while there are others that don’t even brush once a day! Gum disease is a chronic and acute bacterial infection of the soft tissues surrounding the teeth. With symptoms that begin with gum inflammation and bad breath and end in tooth loss and oral lesions, this ailment is not a condition to be trifled with.
What’s shocking to learn from the dentist, however, is that the vast majority of the population (as many as 8 out of 10 people) presents with some form or stage of gum disease; be it a mild infection or advanced bone and tooth loss! These statistics may be hard to swallow until you learn that in its early stages, gum disease does not necessarily cause any pain or discomfort. Patients can live with the mild symptoms (such as bad breath ) for several years before they are aware that they have a significant problem. Little do they know, says the dentist , that periodontal disease – the outcome of a gum infection left untreated – is a death sentence for your beautiful smile.
Advice from the Dentist : Preventing Gum Disease
Maintaining a beautiful smile while avoiding the social and professional curse of bad breath away means making sure you look after your teeth and gums. Some of the main causes behind gum disease, says the dentist, are completely avoidable and include:
• Poor lifelong oral hygiene: Not brushing daily, not flossing and neglecting to see the dentist regularly.
• Poor diet: Not eating a balanced diet, resulting in a low immunity to infection as well as weak gums and teeth.
• Poor lifestyle choices: According to the dentist , smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and drug abuse are major causes behind tooth decay, gum disease and tooth loss.
Not falling into any of these categories decreases the risk that bacterial infection and gum disease poses to the health of your teeth and gums.
Dentist : Five Golden Rules for Oral Health Care
There are really five golden rules to follow in order to avoid developing any of the terrible oral afflictions characterized by bacterial infection of the gums, such as tooth discoloration, eventual loss, gum bleeding and bad breath :
1. Brush your teeth thoroughly at least twice every day, morning and night,
2. Floss every day,
3. Eat a balanced diet and drink plenty of water,
4. Avoid bad habits such as smoking and limit your alcohol intake,
5. Visit the dentist twice a year for check-ups.
Together, these five golden rules will help you to maintain beautiful pearly whites and healthy pink gums until well into your late adulthood and beyond!