Gum disease is a serious oral health issue that affects millions of people worldwide. It’s a bacterial infection that can lead to tooth loss if left untreated. Fortunately, it is preventable with good oral hygiene, regular dental checkups with your dentist in Coral Gables, and other preventative measures.
Causes of Gum Disease
Gum disease is caused by the bacteria that naturally live in our mouths. When we consume food and drinks, bacteria in the mouth form a sticky film called plaque on the teeth. If this plaque is not removed by brushing and flossing, it can harden into tartar, which can only be removed by a dental professional.
When tartar builds up on the teeth, it can lead to gum disease. The bacteria in the tartar can cause inflammation and infection in the gums, leading to symptoms such as redness, swelling, bleeding, and bad breath. If left untreated, gum disease can progress to periodontitis, a more severe form of the disease that can cause tooth loss.
Risks of Gum Disease
There are several factors that can increase your risk of developing gum disease such as:
- Poor oral hygiene: If you do not brush and floss regularly, you are more likely to develop gum disease.
- Smoking: Smoking is a major risk factor for gum disease. It can reduce blood flow to the gums, making it harder for them to fight off infection.
- Genetics: Some people may be more genetically predisposed to gum disease than others.
- Age: As we get older, our gums may become more vulnerable to infection.
- Certain medications: Some medications can reduce saliva production, which can increase the risk of gum disease.
Preventing Gum Disease
The good news is that gum disease is preventable. Here are some tips for keeping your gums healthy:
- Brush and floss regularly: Brush your teeth twice a day for two minutes each time, and floss at least once a day. This will help to remove plaque from your teeth and prevent tartar buildup.
- Quit smoking: If you smoke or use any type of tobacco product, quitting is one of the best things you can do for your oral and overall health.
- Eat a healthy diet: Eating a balanced diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins can help to keep your gums healthy.
- Visit your dentist in Coral Gables regularly: Regular dental checkups and cleanings are essential for preventing gum disease. Your dentist can remove any tartar buildup and check for signs of gum disease.
At our dental office in Coral Gables, we are committed to helping our patients maintain healthy gums and prevent gum disease. Our experienced dental team offers a wide range of preventive services, including regular dental checkups and cleanings, to help keep your smile healthy and beautiful.