It is very important to not only look after your teeth but your gums as well.
Gum disease is the swelling, soreness or infection of the tissues supporting the teeth. Most people will experience some gum disease during their lifetime and although the condition cannot be reversed, it is possible to slow the development to a rate that will enable you to keep your teeth for life.
Causes of gum disease
Gum disease is caused by a build-up of plaque. It is important that you brush your teeth at least twice a day and use interdental brushes to remove all plaque build-up from your teeth.
Signs of gum disease
The first sign of gum disease is bleeding when you brush your teeth. You may also notice that your gums bleed when you are eating, you have a bad taste in your mouth and you may find that you develop bad breath.
Treatment of gum disease
If you notice any of the above signs, it is important that you attend for an appointment with your dentist. The dental team will remove all plaque and tartar from your teeth, most likely by referring you to the hygienist. The hygienist will ensure that your teeth are thoroughly and effectively cleaned and will show you how to maintain a good oral hygiene routine at home.
In recent years gum disease has been linked with general health conditions such as diabetes, strokes, cardiovascular disease, poor pregnancy outcomes and even dementia, so it is even more important that you keep your gums as healthy as possible.
Benefits of healthy gums
Reduce the risk of tooth loss – gum disease is the leading cause of tooth loss in adults in the UK, by keeping your gums healthy you can reduce the risk of premature tooth loss.
Maintain jaw bone – if gum disease is allowed to progress it can also cause bone loss. Without this support your face can sag and look prematurely aged.
Reduce your risk of developing chronic conditions – if your gums are healthy you are less likely to suffer from diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease, dementia and pregnancy complications.