Gum disease is the most dreaded of oral health problems because, once it develops past a certain point, it is usually irreversible and takes surgical intervention to treat. If gum disease is left untreated it can spread and deepen, resulting in tooth loss and other serious health problems. Periodontal health issues affect the structural integrity of underlying structures supporting the teeth. The jaw bone loses density and becomes incapable of anchoring dental roots and supporting teeth. Severe periodontal health issues can also increase the risk of cardiac problems and diabetes.
The best way to tackle periodontal disease is to prevent it from happening in the first place. A combination of excellent oral hygiene and timely remedial measures help detect and treat gum problems. Regular professional cleanings and dental checkups are essential. Schedule biannual dental checkups to help your dentist spot decay and gum issues in time to prevent them from advancing. You will be referred to a Phoenix periodontist by your dentist if he spots any problems.
Here are a few things that you can do to prevent and address periodontal problems.
1) Good Oral Health Habits Are Key
Good oral health habits are the best means of preventing gum problems. Brush at least twice every day and make flossing a daily habit.
Remember that your food habits should also enable good oral hygiene. Late night snacking and munching on sticky treats should be avoided. Colas and sugar-loaded beverages wreak havoc on dental well being. Also, excessive red wine, sports drinks and alcohol do considerable damage to teeth. Sugars are the biggest enemy of teeth and are the favorite food of harmful bacteria. Adopting healthy hygiene habits and following a good lifestyle can ensure that periodontal disease does not destroy your dental health.
2) Hydrogen Peroxide Is Smile-Friendly
Hydrogen peroxide can be used to reduce and remove bacteria from the mouth and keep it healthy. The anti-bacterial properties of hydrogen peroxide are useful in reducing plaque buildup and protecting gums. Peroxide also acts as a whitening agent to restore the shine and beauty of your pearly whites.
Hydrogen peroxide is not for daily use and you should be careful to use the right concentration. Hydrogen peroxide mouth rinses are available with instructions regarding their dosage. It can also be mixed with baking soda to make homemade toothpaste that can be used for gentle brushing of the gums and teeth.
Hydrogen peroxide not only destroys bacteria in the mouth but also inhibits its growth.
3) Follow a Healthy Diet
A healthy diet is one of the best means of achieving healthy teeth.
Crunchy and fibrous fruits and veggies help remove food debris lodged in between teeth. They also dislodge stubborn plaque and stem bacterial activity.
Multi-hued fruits and vegetables contain plentiful anti-oxidants that bolster the immune system and natural anti-bacterial powers of the body. The increased immune powers of the body protect the gums from inflammation and bleeding.
Fruits like kiwi are rich in Vitamin C that strengthens the collagen in gums. A stronger collagen network protects the gums from the action of bacteria, helps anchor teeth in place, and reduces tooth loss.
Crunchy veggies like celery and carrots aid in protecting your teeth and gums. They require extra chewing which produces more saliva in the mouth. Saliva washes away harmful bacteria from the mouth and keeps your teeth and gums healthy. Also, these veggies have abrasive properties that help massage teeth and gums, remove hardened plaque buildup and increase blood circulation in the gums.
So the next time you consider a sugary snack, opt instead for crunchy salads that will not only help your skin glow but will also help keep your smile beautiful.
4) Stay Hydrated
Water is another unexpected aide in helping you achieve oral health and well being. It not only hydrates the body, but also stimulates saliva production. Saliva is your mouth’s first line of defense against harmful bacteria. Water also helps wash away food remnants and sticky sugars from the mouth. A dry mouth is a suitable environment for bacteria to multiply and grow, leading to extensive decay.
5) Quit Smoking
Lifestyle habits like smoking have an adverse effect on your dental health as well as your overall health. Studies show that smokers are six times as more likely to contract periodontal disease compared to non-smokers. Gum tissues swell and bleed easily, giving rise to deep periodontal pockets. Even after treatment, those who continue smoking see very little healing, and complete recovery is almost impossible.
The nicotine present in tobacco constricts blood vessels and decreases the blood supply to the gums and jaw bone, thereby reducing sensation in smokers. This makes it hard to spot gum disease and infections on time, and also reduces immunity. Nicotine also causes saliva to thicken to mucus, which does not have the protective properties of normal ‘serous’ saliva, and as a result increases your chances of tooth decay.
Periodontal problems are very serious and require professional intervention to be cured. But if you are careful with your dental well being and are scrupulous with your hygiene habits, then you can keep gum disease at bay. Healthy food and careful oral hygiene are necessary for oral well being.