The numbers surrounding gum disease, or periodontitis, are alarming. The CDC reports that nearly 65 million Americans over the age of 30 have mild, moderate, or severe gum disease, which can lead to irreversible damage if not treated.
Let’s take a look at why prevention is important, and five great ways to maintain the health of your gums.
Gum disease is serious
Gum disease starts out benignly enough as gingivitis, which is an inflammation around the edges of your gums. Left unchecked, bacteria can work their way farther under your gum line where they can destroy your soft connective tissues, as well as your teeth and bone.
This leads to increasingly loose teeth that will eventually fall out. In extreme cases, gum disease can even lead to bone loss in your jaw.
To prevent this from happening, simply follow these five great tips:
1. Brush and Floss Regularly
The care you provide at home is paramount for healthy teeth and gums. Dr. Basar recommends that this care include:
- Brushing twice a day
- Flossing once a day
- Rinsing throughout the day, especially after meals
The flossing, especially, helps dislodge bacteria-harboring food that’s stuck around your gums.
2. Don’t skip your biannual cleaning and checkup.
One of the best ways to stay one step ahead of gum disease is to keep up with your twice-yearly professional cleanings with Dr. Basar. These visits allow us to monitor your gum health and give us the opportunity to remove tough tartar from your teeth.
3. Quit smoking
If you’re a smoker, we’re going to add gum disease to the long list of problems that are influenced by this habit. Smoking weakens your immune system, which compromises your body’s ability to fight off infections like gum disease.
4. Take your vitamins
Eating a well-balanced diet full of beneficial nutrients can go a long way toward maintaining the health of your gums. Look for foods that contain antioxidants, which help boost your immune system. A great place to start is by adding more fruits, vegetables, and nuts to your diet.
5. Be aware of your habits
If you clench or grind your teeth, you may be weakening their supportive structures, leaving them more susceptible to gum disease, or you may have a condition know as TMJ. To prevent grinding your teeth together, we can set you up with a mouthguard.
To learn more about preventing gum disease, and for all of your general and cosmetic dental needs, please contact our office in Toms River, NJ to set up an appointment. Call us at 732-608-6478 or request your consultation online.