Did you know that unless treated, gum disease could lead to an advanced stage known as periodontitis, which is responsible for adult tooth loss? In today’s blog, we’re looking at the steps needed to avoid gum disease, or if the issue has already developed in your smile, manage it successfully. Let’s learn how your Livonia, MI, dentist addresses gum disease and prevents tooth loss!
The Onset of Gum Disease
A number of factors could cause the gums to become inflamed, also known as gingivitis. Smoking and tobacco use, poor oral hygiene and a diet high in sugar could cause plaque buildup, or inflammatory illness or certain medications could all inflame the periodontal tissues. Even a family history of periodontal disease could be a factor! When the gums become inflamed, they may feel sore, look red, or bleed easily. Unless treatment is administered, the tissues could eventually pull away from the teeth and form deep pockets. Bacteria entering these pockets then causes periodontal disease. While gingivitis can be reversed, the disease stage cannot, and treatment is instead needed to prevent periodontitis and adult tooth loss.
Prevention at Home
To prevent or manage the issue at home, you should make time to brush your teeth twice a day, once when waking up and once more before going to bed. Each session should last about two minutes and make use of a fluoride toothpaste. You also need to floss up and down each side of every tooth, dipping briefly below the gum line when you do, to remove trapped food particles a toothbrush alone cannot. Cutting back on sugary foods and drinks is also helpful, as is avoiding tobacco products.
Deep Cleanings and More
To reverse gingivitis or manage gum disease, we may prescribe a deep cleaning, also known as a scaling and root planing. The process involves using an ultrasonic scaler and manual tool to break up and remove plaque and tartar from the teeth and roots. The process could take one visit, or up to four, depending on the extent of your buildup. We then polish the teeth thoroughly. Every three to four months afterward, we may suggest a routine cleaning, which is less involved, to control plaque and tartar and protect the gum tissues. If you have any questions about managing your oral health or avoid issues with poor periodontal health, then contact our team today.
DO YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT OUR PREVENTIVE TREATMENTS?
Our team understands that preventing or managing periodontal disease means protecting smiles from issues like tooth loss. For more information on avoiding the onset of gingivitis and periodontal disease, or to schedule a consultation, call the office of James Stewart, DDS in Livonia, MI, today at (734) 425-4400.