Three out of four adults are affected by periodontal disease at some point in their life. In fact, people over 35 lose more teeth to periodontal disease than to cavities. In order to prevent these diseases, It helps to know the signs. There are not always symptoms unfortunately, but when they are present, their characteristics are very common.
When plaque begins to build up on teeth and gums, it shows as a white filmy substance. If it is not removed, it will hardened and turn to tartar. When this toxic substance grows past the gum line, it will irritate and inflame the tissue. Gums will become red, swollen, and more prone to bleeding. Further progression of the bacteria will affect the structure of bone and tissue, eventually leading to gum recession, bone loss and tooth loss. Research has shown that diseases in the mouth may be associated with other diseases within the body, so it’s important to address periodontal issues as early as possible or to prevent them altogether.
Prevent Poor Oral Health
These are the periodontal habits that will help prevent poor oral health:
- Brush your teeth: It is important to brush in the morning, before bed at night, and after each meal. These are the times that food can accumulate in your mouth and develop into plaque. Ensure all tooth surfaces are cleansed, but don’t forget to brush the gum tissue and tongue as well (bacteria loves to hide on tissue too!).
- Floss your teeth. In the same way that brushing removes plaque before it settles, flossing removes food and plaque from between the teeth before it hardens. These areas are too tight to be reached by the bristles of a tooth brush, so floss at least once a day.
- Use mouthwash: Swishing mouthwash around all your teeth and tissues should be the third line of defense in your daily oral care routine. The action of pushing the liquid through the spaces between your teeth, and over the areas cleaned by your toothbrush, washes away any leftover particles.
- Regular check ups: Seeing your dentist or periodontist regularly will ensure that all aspects of your oral health are being monitored. A Comprehensive Periodontal Evaluation (CPE) will assess your teeth, plaque levels, gum tissue, bone structure and bite. Identifying problem areas early, is key to preventing periodontal disease. So too, is understanding your own personal risk factors.