Five Tips for Preventing Periodontal Disease
Periodontal disease is a sneaky condition. Even people who brush and floss daily are not immune, and people are often unaware that there is a problem until the disease has become serious. When left untreated, periodontal disease, or gum disease, can lead to infections, gum pain, and tooth loss. In fact, periodontal disease can have an impact on the overall health of your body, because it has been associated with a higher risk of heart disease, stroke, and even cancer. Nearly half of the population of the United States has gum disease, but there is good news. With a few simple precautions, you can protect your mouth from periodontal disease.
- Clean your teeth thoroughly. At least twice a day, brush your teeth for at least two minutes to remove food debris and plaque. While you’re brushing, make sure to brush your tongue, where bacteria loves to hide. Swish with mouthwash after brushing, to reduce plaque and remove particles that may have been missed, and floss at least once a day.
- Visit your dentist regularly. At least once a year, have your teeth cleaned by professionals. Dentists have the necessary professional cleaning tools to get rid of plaque and tartar on your teeth and in your gums. Your dentist can also discover signs of periodontal disease, and advise you on how best to care for your teeth.
- Understand your risk of periodontal disease. Your risk for periodontal disease increases as you age, but smoking, diet, and genetics also play a part. If you are at increased risk, bring this up with your dentist. He or she may recommend a visit to the periodontist.
- Quit the bad habits that are putting you at risk. Smoking, eating a lot of sugar, and eating late at night are all habits that increase your risk of gum disease. If you must have a snack after you’ve brushed your teeth for the night, brush them again so that food particles don’t stay in your mouth overnight.
- Keep an eye on your teeth. Look for early signs of periodontal disease, because as the disease progresses, it gets worse and does more damage. Pay special attention to gums that bleed when you brush or floss, seeing your dentist to report this as soon as possible.
If gum disease progresses to an advanced stage, your dentist may recommend periodontal therapy. This requires multiple appointments, treating one region of the mouth at a time while the area is numb. Tartar, plaque, and toxins are removed from above and below the gum tissue, and rough spots on root surfaces are smoothed. This allows the gum tissue to heal and periodontal pockets to shrink. In some cases, periodontal disease must be treated with surgery. In a surgical procedure known as flap surgery, the doctor pulls apart the gum and removes tartar from deep pockets. It’s much easier and less expensive to care for your teeth properly before it gets to that point and to have regular appointments with a well-qualified dentist.
At Glenwood Premier Dental, we believe that a healthy, confident smile is an important part of a happy and healthy lifestyle. Our staff of caring professionals is committed to offering a wide range of dental services, exceeding our patients’ expectations, and providing the best possible service. We offer dental exams and teeth cleanings, implant dentistry, Invisalign, laser dentistry, teeth whitening, veneers, and more, using state of the art technology in a comfortable and friendly environment. If you’re looking for dental care in Hazlet, contact us through our website or call 732.264.4477 for more information.