Keeping your gums healthy is a crucial part in maintaining good oral hygiene and preventing gum disease. As your local Tucson Orthodontist, our goal is to help straighten your teeth to make cleaning them a breeze and give you the confidence you deserve. Even if you are someone who is cavity free, and have beautiful teeth, that doesn’t mean you can’t be a victim to gum disease. Since gum disease is usually painless, most people have no idea that anything is wrong until being told by their dentist or hygienist.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease starts when plaque builds up underneath and along the gumline. Plaque is a sticky, film-like substance that is filled with bacteria. It can cause infections that hurt the gum and bone, leading to gum disease and tooth decay. Plaque can also cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease.
Symptoms of Gingivitis Include:
- Inflammation of the gum tissue
- Red, swollen Gums
- Sore and tender to the touch
- Bleeding gums when brushing or flossing
Fortunately, gingivitis can be reversed since the bone and tissue aren’t impacted until it progresses into periodontitis. Periodontitis is an advanced form of gum disease that attacks the bone that holds your teeth in place.
Symptoms of Periodontitis
- Loose permanent teeth
- Bleeding gums
- Gums that have pulled away from the teeth
- Swollen, Red, tender gums
- Constantly having bad breath or taste
How to Keep your Gums Healthy | Avoiding Gum Disease
- Floss: Floss at least once a day! This helps remove the plaque and food that is beyond your toothbrush’s reach. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), it doesn’t matter what time of day you choose to floss. As long as you are doing it!
- Get regular dental cleanings: To keep your gums healthy, it is important that you visit your dentist every 6 months for a routine cleaning and checkup. Your dentist will be able to detect early gum disease symptoms and help you reverse the symptoms before they progress into lasting damage. A professional cleaning is the only way to remove the hard, tartar build-up on your teeth and gumline. It will also get rid of any plaque you missed when brushing and flossing.
- Quite Smoking: Yet another reason for smokers to quit! Smoking is strongly associated with the onset of gum disease. According to the CDC, smoking weakens your immune system which can inevitably make it harder for one to fight off a gum infection.
- Brush twice a day: Brushing your teeth after every meal will help keep your gums healthy. It’s easy for sugars to get caught into between your teeth in gums while eating, so brushing the excess food away before going on with your day will help prevent tartar build-up which can lead to gingivitis and cavities.
- Use fluoride toothpaste: Make sure you choose toothpaste that contains fluoride and has the ADA seal of acceptance.
- Use a therapeutic mouthwash: Usually available over the counter, therapeutic mouthwashes can hep reduce plaque, prevent or reduce gingivitis, and reduce the speed that tarter builds up. Mouthwash will help remove food particles and debris from your mouth, though it is not a substitute for brushing and flossing.
Visit Freytag Orthodontics
Having straight teeth not only boosts one’s self confidence, but it also plays an important role in the keeping your gums healthy. Teeth that are straight are easier to keep clean. There are less places for food and sugars to get trapped, and it makes brushing and flossing a breeze! Whether you’re looking to improve your smile with braces or Invisalign, Freytag Orthodontics is here to help you achieve a HEALTHY smile that will last a lifetime. Visit our website to schedule a free consultation today! www.freytagortho.com