The Importance of Good Gum Health
By Steven Kail on February 08, 2017
The blood vessels in your teeth and gums travel throughout the mouth and connect to the rest of the body. This connection makes maintaining good gum health critical to your overall health. At Premier Dental, our dentists place a strong focus on educating patients about the importance of good gum health during their exams at our Jackson, TN office. Should problems arise, we offer a variety of restorative dentistry treatments to restore your gums to good health. To learn more about protecting your gums from disease, contact the knowledgeable team at Premier Dental today.
What Is Gum Disease?
Also known as periodontal disease, gum disease is the leading cause of adult tooth loss. The progression of gum disease takes place in stages, starting with gingivitis. When bacteria in the mouth are not properly removed through regular brushing, flossing, and regular dental cleanings, the gums become infected.
During its earliest stages, the gums are red, inflamed, and typically bleed during brushing and flossing. As the infection spreads and the disease progresses, the gums actually begin to pull away from the teeth, creating pockets. These pockets become the ideal breeding ground for more bacteria. Eventually, the gums begin to recede, exposing the tooth roots. If gum disease is not treated by this stage, tooth loss can occur.
Why Is Gum Health So Important?
Believe it or not, tooth loss is not the most serious risk associated with gum disease. The blood vessels in the gums create a path for an infection to travel to other areas of your body. This may cause an inflammatory response, or it could lead to serious complications.
Consequences of Gum Disease
Research has found connections between gum disease and other serious health complications. These may include:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Chronic respiratory disease
- Pregnancy complications
Although scientists have not yet determined whether gum disease can actually cause any of these conditions, the correlation is strong. The primary link between all these conditions is inflammation. The body’s response to this inflammation may target infected and healthy tissues in the body, leading to these complications.
How Can I Prevent Gum Disease?
Although some patients are at a greater risk for developing gum disease, there are steps you can take to help prevent it. Good at-home oral care can help tremendously. Brush your teeth and gums twice each day with a soft-bristled toothbrush. Remember to floss once per day to remove bacteria and food particles from between the teeth.
Make sure you are diligent about attending your biannual dental cleanings and exams. Professional cleanings can eliminate the plaque that builds up in hard-to-reach places. Regular dental exams can allow us to examine your gums and watch for changes that could indicate the early signs of gum disease. The earlier we can treat the disease, the better for both your oral and overall health.
Other things you can do to prevent gum disease include not smoking cigarettes or using other tobacco products and eating a healthy diet.
Learn More about the Importance of Good Gum Health
If you experience any signs of gum disease, contact our office right away to schedule an appointment. Early detection and treatment can prevent future complications.
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