How do I keep my gums healthy?
- Follow the oral hygiene instructions given by your Periodontist and/ or Hygienist. This means follow the brushing and flossing methods shown to you.
- Quit smoking.
- Gum disease tends to recur be aware of any changes in your mouth.
- See your Periodontist/Hygienist if you notice any of the following:
- Bleeding gums.
- Persistent bad taste or bad breath
- Trouble chewing
- Loose teeth
- Regular Periodontal maintenance visits.
- Following the maintenance programme recommended by your Periodontist or Hygienist.
- Continue to see your general dentist for your regular dental check ups.
Adults over the age of 35 lose more teeth to gum diseases than from cavities. At least three out of four adults are affected at some time in their life. The best way to prevent cavities and periodontal diseases is by daily thorough tooth brushing and flossing techniques and regular professional examinations and cleanings. Unfortunately, even with the most diligent home dental care, people can still develop some form of periodontal disease. Once this disease starts, professional intervention is necessary to prevent its progress.
Other important factors that can negatively affect the health of your gums include: tobacco usage, stress, clenching and grinding teeth, some medications, and poor nutrition.
Periodontal Disease & Tobacco
You are probably familiar with the links between tobacco use and lung disease, cancer, and heart disease. Current studies have now also linked periodontal disease with tobacco usage. Cases of periodontal disease are more severe in smokers and tobacco-users than those of non-users of tobacco. There is a greater incidence of calculus formation on teeth, deeper pockets between gums and teeth, and a greater loss of the bone and fibres that hold teeth in your mouth. In addition, your chance of developing oral cancer increases with the use of smokeless tobacco.
Chemicals in tobacco such as nicotine and tar also slow down healing and the predictability of success following periodontal treatment. Quitting smoking and tobacco-use can have innumerous benefits for your overall and periodontal health.