Your gums are part of the main support system for your teeth, along with your jawbone. If your gums are not healthy, your teeth could be at risk.
September is National Gum Care Month, and our goal is to educate you about gum health so you'll be able to pinpoint any signs of gum disease early on when it's much easier to treat.
What Is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is essentially an infection of the gums and jawbone that support your teeth. The infection starts when plaque and bacteria are not sufficiently removed with brushing and flossing daily. Plaque buildup can cause your gums to separate from your teeth allowing bacteria to descend below the gumline, where it may cause an infection that impacts your jawbone. If we don't treat the infection, it slowly destroys your soft tissues and bone and eventually results in tooth loss.
Did you know that gum disease is the number one cause of tooth loss in American adults?
How You Can Protect Yourself From Gum Disease
Your bi-annual teeth cleaning and checkup with your dentist is truly your first line of defense against gum disease. Your dentist can detect this condition much earlier than you might be able to because there are very few signs and symptoms at first. So when you visit your dentist consistently every six months for teeth cleanings and checkups, they'll screen you for gum disease and remove the excess plaque buildup in hard-to-reach places that contributes to it.
You can also commit to a consistent home care routine at home to help protect yourself from gum disease. For example, daily brushing and flossing using the proper techniques keep your mouth clean and bacteria-free.
The Early Signs of Gum Disease in Metairie, LA
Gingivitis is the first stage of gum disease. If you suffer from gingivitis, you may notice these symptoms:
- Gums that appear red and swollen
- Chronic bad breath that doesn't go away when you brush or floss your teeth
- Gums that bleed during brushing and flossing
If you notice these signs, or it's time for your next dental cleaning and checkup in Metairie, contact your team at Oak Family Dental today to schedule an appointment.