A healthy set of teeth not only reflects a pearly smile but also reflects your personal hygiene and lifestyle. Teeth and gums are an essential part of the oral cavity that helps in the chemical and mechanical breakdown of food while giving the mouth its aesthetic appeal. However, failing to maintain oral hygiene can not only bring certain detrimental effect on your oral health but also prompt the development of gum diseases.
What Causes Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a common condition when plaque, a sticky substance filled with bacteria builds up under and along the gum line. Over time the plaque results in an infection that fills the gums, causing soreness, inflammation, tenderness, and bleeding. This may lead to early stages of gum disease such as gingivitis which can progress into periodontal disease if left untreated.
How to Prevent Gum Disease?
Fortunately, most gum diseases are preventable. Here are 5 tips you can use to keep your gums healthy.
- Make Routine Visit to Dentist
To maintain an optimum level of oral hygiene, it is imperative to visit your dentist to get your teeth and gums checked. While most self-cleaning practices do their job, some areas of the gums and teeth get overlooked and build up plaque and decay over time. Adding a weekly or monthly visit to your routine will help detect early symptoms of diseases, infections, and cavities before they take their toll.
- Flossing Your Teeth
Flossing is among the most underrated oral cleaning practices and also the most effective in removing plaque and food particles that become resilient to tooth brushing. Dental floss helps reach out the gaps where a toothbrush is ineffective, removing plaque that is harboring in between. With routinely use, flossing decreases the risk of periodontal gum disease, cavities, and tooth decay.
- Stop Smoking Cigarettes
Smoking not only damages the lungs but also has detrimental effects on the gums and teeth. Medical research by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has proven that smokers are at a much higher risk of developing gum diseases. Smoking is also strongly associated with the onset of gum erosion. Smoking weakens the immune system, leaving the oral cavity vulnerable to diseases and infections. Moreover, smoking presents as a major hurdle for a dental implant recipient since a smoker’s gums take a lot longer to heal after surgery.
- Use Fluoride Toothpaste
Fluoride is an excellent deterrent of tooth decay. It works by slowing down the breakdown of enamel and accelerating the remineralization process. When the new enamel crystals formed are larger, harder and more resistant to plaque and acid. Using fluoride toothpaste assists in the reconstruction of the enamel and preventing plaque to seep into the pores of the enamel and damage its internal structure.
- Brush Twice a Day
Brushing your teeth twice a day helps remove plaque, food particles and bacteria that often builds up between the teeth and gums. Brushing your teeth twice a day and using a good mouthwash is vital for proper oral hygiene, maintaining a fresh breath, reducing the risk of gum disease, removing teeth stains and even prevent dementia.