Periodontal disease can be prevented through many different methods. There are three habits specifically that anyone can practice to prevent periodontal disease.
Periodontal disease covers several diseases that all affect the gums. All of the diseases are caused by bacteria from plaque and tartar build up on the teeth. Luckily, when caught in the early stages and with proper care, most periodontal diseases can be managed. From at-home care to more advanced periodontal cleaning, there are many habits and methods to help prevent periodontal disease.
One of the best methods to prevent periodontal disease is to brush your teeth at least twice a day. This removes plaque, the bacteria-filled sticky substance, from getting stuck to the teeth. Dental professionals recommend brushing at least twice a day: in the morning when you get up and at night before you go to sleep.
When brushing, Healthline recommends you make sure to scrub the teeth in circles at an angle going towards the gums when brushing the front side of your teeth. On the sides, keep brushing in circles to make sure all surfaces of the teeth are cleaned. Also, be sure to brush over your tongue at the end as well when you are brushing your teeth.
As unpleasant as flossing may be, flossing regularly helps prevent periodontal disease. In fact, bleeding gums and sensitive gums may be a sign of periodontal disease. When flossing, be sure to get up to the gum line and wrap the floss around the tooth to fully get all the plaque and food buildup that may be stuck there. Flossing before you brush your teeth can also help remove any food between the teeth. For more information and tips on flossing, check out our guide on flossing.
In addition to proper at-home dental care, regular cleanings by dental professionals help prevent periodontal disease. Regular cleanings are the routine cleanings done once or twice a year to remove plaque and tartar off the teeth. Plaque, if left on the teeth for too long will turn into tartar, which hardens on the teeth. Tartar cannot be removed by just a toothbrush and flossing, so regular cleanings are needed to remove tartar build up. Tartar causes cavities and issues with the gums.
Regular cleanings also act as preventive care against periodontal disease. The signs of diseases like gingivitis and other periodontal diseases are not as noticeable at first. A professional look at your teeth every six months or every year can help catch problems early and set up a treatment plan for them. Treatment plans can include periodontal cleanings to help further remove tartar. Periodontal cleanings focus on cleaning the gums and providing a deeper clean.
The beginning stage of periodontal disease manifests as gingivitis. The common sign of gingivitis is red, swollen, or bleeding gums. Plaque turned tartar hardens on the tooth and causes the inner layer of the gums and bone to pull away from the tooth. More bacteria gets in these pockets and infects it. This can eventually lead to bone loss if proper care is not taken to get rid of the bacteria.
There are other signs of periodontal disease. An important thing to look out for is how your gums feel in your mouth. According to the Mayo Clinic, the gums should fit snugly around the teeth and be pale pink and firm. If the gums do not match this description, then it is possible you are in the beginning stages of periodontal disease.
Other signs of periodontal disease according to the Mayo Clinic include:
Make sure to contact a dental professional if you have any of these symptoms. It is better to be on the safe side and prevent problems early than let your gum health deteriorate.
For more advanced gum care, and any concern about periodontal disease, our team at San Antonio Periodontics and Implants can help you. Our number is 210-824-0111, and you can schedule an appointment on our website.
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