According to the Canadian Dental Association, disease of the gums will affect seven out of ten Canadians at one point in their lives. You may never know you have gum disease and it may start to become painful once it’s already in its advanced stages. The good thing is that this dental issue is preventable and reversible.
When plaque gets stuck below the gum line, it hardens and turns into tartar. Tartar causes bacterial infection in the area where the teeth and gums meet. This triggers gum disease.
When the disease starts, you may notice your gum turning red and sensitive when you brush. It can also bleed when you eat hard food. This can still be treated by maintaining good dental hygiene habits.
Once gum disease progresses, the gums, bone, and tissues holding your teeth in place can get infected and break down. You may end up losing one or several teeth.Your dentist can diagnose it in its early stages and treat it. You may need to get new xrays to check whether there’s bone loss and if the tooth can still be saved.
If the gum disease is already serious, you may be referred to a periodontist.
Risk Factors and Prevention
Smoking, poor nutrition, hormonal changes, and taking certain medications can make you more vulnerable to gum disease.
To prevent gum disease, keeping your mouth clean is essential. Brushing, flossing, and rinsing your mouth will help prevent bacterial infection in your mouth.
Seeing your dentist and hygienist is also crucial to remove any tartar buildup on your teeth. Routine dental appointments also allow you to have your mouth checked for signs you may have disease of the gums.
Update your dental team too if you’re currently taking certain medications.
Maintaining a balanced diet and quitting smoking also helps lower your risk of developing gum diseases.
Should you notice any symptoms, you don’t have to wait for your next dental visit. See your dentist right away.