As an informed dental patient, you probably spend a good amount of time taking care of your teeth. You most likely brush at least twice a day, floss regularly, and see a dentist on a regular schedule…but are you taking care of your gums? In the world of dental care, gums are often overlooked—patients feel that if they’re cleaning their teeth, they won’t have any dental problems. Unfortunately, ignoring your gums can lead to serious health problems, and gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adult patients.
To make sure that you’re maintaining healthy gums, take the time to evaluate your mouth for signs of gum disease. Gum disease can be effectively managed and treated once it’s identified, but the first step is to see our O’Fallon dentists and seek treatment.
So what should you look out for?
In the first stages of gum disease, called gingivitis, the gum tissue is infected with harmful oral bacteria. You may notice that your gums are:
· Red and inflamed
· Prone to bleeding, especially when aggravated by brushing
· Swollen or puffy
As gum disease progresses it turn into a condition called periodontitis. Patients with periodontitis not only have infected gums, they also have infected teeth, connective tissues, or facial/jaw bones. Periodontitis is a serious condition that can lead to:
· Shifting/misaligned teeth
· Tooth loss
· Bone density deterioration
Treating gum disease requires regular maintenance and a proper, personalized oral hygiene routine. Working with a dental professional, you can take control of your oral health and reclaim a health smile! Give our O’Fallon dental office a call for more information or to schedule a consultation—the sooner you begin treatment the less likely it is that you’ll suffer long-term complications.