This February, it’s time to shine a light on an often-overlooked component of your oral health: your gums. Healthy gums can provide the foundation for a beautiful smile and a lifetime of healthy teeth. On the other hand, gum disease can lead to painful complications and even cause tooth loss. Today, we want to answer some of our patients’ frequently asked questions on gum disease.
Is Gum Disease Common?
Almost half of American adults experience some form of gum disease, according to the Center for Disease Control. While gum disease may be widespread, there is some good news: early detection and treatment can often prevent further damage. Sometimes, Dr. McCord and our team may even be able to reverse the effects of minor gum disease!
What Causes Gum Disease?
Gum disease is commonly caused by poor oral hygiene. Without regular brushing and flossing, plaque on your teeth can build up and harden into tartar that irritates gums. Without proper treatment, gums may become infected, resulting in gum disease. Smokers and folks that use tobacco products have a higher risk for developing gum disease.
What Are the Early Signs of Gum Disease?
Each time you visit our office for a cleaning or exam, our team checks to ensure your gums are healthy and strong. At home, you should keep an eye out for any sudden changes in your gums such as redness, tenderness, or swelling. Additionally, if your gums bleed easily, that may be a warning sign that you’re in the early stages of gum disease.
How Can I Care for My Gums?
For the most part, you should care for your gums in the same way you care for your pearly whites: good oral hygiene. Brush your teeth twice daily for two minutes each time, and floss each day to keep oral bacteria at bay. To learn more about caring for your gums or to schedule your next appointment, call our Centerton office today!