A solid daily oral maintenance program is critical to healthy teeth and gums. But even the most astute patient can be faced with gum disease. In addition to brushing and flossing, regular visits to the dentist will be helpful in spotting potential problems before they can escalate … as well as removing plaque buildup which can lead to inflammation. But dentistry can only go so far. There are other things to be done to promote excellent oral health.
You need to be educated on what can lead to gum disease (often starting out with an area of inflammation). And your whole mouth does not need to be involved – it can affect one tooth, one quadrant, one arch, or all your teeth.
If your gums are red, swollen, and/or bleeding, areas to consider include:
Tobacco use – chewing or smoking. Cigarettes, cigars, or pipe smoking can lead to oral problems. Tobacco users are much more likely to develop gum disease that can result in tooth loss.
What kind of beverages do you drink? Soda is very hard on your oral health. Sugary juices, fruit, and sports drinks can be very harmful. Alcoholic beverages are very likely to contain sugar or carbohydrates. Water is a much better choice … if you don’t like plain water, try infusing it with your favorite fresh fruit.
Snacking is fine, but sugar laden treats should be limited to special occasions. Choose healthier snacks like fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, and seeds for everyday between meal treats.
Your daily diet should include foods plentiful with healthy vitamins and nutrients. All food groups are acceptable, but sugar and carbohydrates cling to bacteria already present in your mouth forming harmful plaque to grow. Introduce your palate to natural foods like fresh vegetables, and try to avoid highly processed consumables to protect your oral health.
Life’s daily stresses can lead to problems like teeth grinding often starting subconsciously during periods of sleep – this might contribute to gum inflammation. Your dentist can fit you with a mouth guard to control teeth grinding.
Daily brushing and flossing will help limit plaque buildup, but if inflammation or bleeding gums should occur dentistry is required. If allowed to escalate, a minor issue can evolve into periodontitis, a serious gum disease that can lead to tooth loss if left untreated.
Contact our office to schedule your next cleaning!