Posts for tag: periodontal disease
When talking about dental health, it’s not just all about having a radiant smile or perfectly straight teeth. You also need to make sure that your gums are in great shape. Even if you have the whitest teeth in town and don’t have any cavities, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re resistant to periodontal or gum disease. Likewise, because gum disease is typically painless, most individuals won’t know that something nasty is already brewing inside their gums.
Fortunately, periodontal disease is preventable, and your family dentist, Dr. Kimberlee Murphy of Crystal Dental Care in Crystal, MN, can help you avoid it. To that end, here are some practical tips to help keep your gums in top shape.
Floss Your Teeth Once Daily At Least
According to the American Dental Association, flossing regularly will help get rid of food particles and plaque that your toothbrush can’t reach. A
Brush Your Teeth Twice Daily At Least
If possible, brush your teeth after each snack or meal and not just in the morning and evening. Also, make sure to clean your tongue and all your other mouth surfaces as well. In addition, make sure to swap your toothbrush when you see the bristles fraying or after three to four months of use.
Regular Dental Examinations and Cleanings
Professional cleanings are the only way to get rid of tartar completely. Likewise, your family dentist in Crystal, MN, is capable of detecting early warning signs of gum disease so that you can receive prompt treatment before they become more serious.
Stop Smoking Right Now
Studies have consistently shown that smoking is a significant risk factor for gum disease. Additionally, because tobacco weakens the immune system, it can also make it more difficult for you to combat gum disease if developed.
For More Tips and Tricks to Prevent Gum Disease, Call Us.
Dial (763) 537-3655 to reach Crystal Dental Care in Crystal, MN, and arrange your consultation with our family dentist, Dr. Kimberlee Murphy.
Periodontal (gum) disease, a bacterial infection caused by plaque, is one of the most prevalent and destructive dental conditions. Left untreated it can eventually lead to tooth and bone loss.
Although people are often unaware they have gum disease, there are a few warning signs to look for. Here are five gum disease signs that should prompt a dental visit.
Gum Swelling and Redness. Like all infections, gum disease triggers an immune system response that releases antibodies into the gums to attack the bacteria. The ensuing battle results in inflammation (swelling) and a darker redness to the gum tissues that don’t lessen with time.
Gum Bleeding. It isn’t normal for healthy gum tissue, which are quite resilient, to bleed. In a few cases, bleeding may indicate over-aggressive brushing, but more likely it means the tissues have weakened to such an extent by infection they bleed easily.
Tooth Sensitivity. If you notice a shot of pain when you eat or drink something hot or cold or when you bite down, this could mean infected gums have “drawn back” (receded) from the teeth. Gum recession exposes the tooth roots, which are more sensitive to temperature and pressure changes in the mouth.
An Abscess. As weakened gum tissues detach from the tooth, the normally thin gap between them and the tooth deepens to form a void known as a periodontal pocket. This often results in an abscess where pus collects in the pocket and causes it to appear more swollen and red than nearby tissues. An abscess needs immediate attention as bone loss is greatly accelerated compared to normal gum disease.
Tooth Looseness or Movement. As diseased gum tissue causes loss of gum and bone attachment, the affected teeth will start to feel loose or even move to a different position. This is a late and alarming sign of gum disease — without immediate intervention, you’re in danger of losing the tooth.
If you encounter any of these signs, contact us for an examination as soon as possible. The sooner we can diagnose gum disease and begin treatment, the less damage it will cause — and the better your odds of regaining healthy teeth and gums.
If you would like more information on gum disease, please contact us to schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Warning Signs of Periodontal (Gum) Disease.”
Surgical treatment for periodontal (gum) disease can go a long way toward restoring your mouth to good health; however, it does not change your susceptibility to the disease. That’s why we recommend that you come in regularly for periodontal cleanings after your treatment. Here are some frequently asked questions about keeping your mouth healthy after gum disease treatment.
How often do I have to come in for periodontal cleanings?
There’s no “one-size-fits-all” answer to that question: It really depends on your individual situation. For example, some individuals may have a more aggressive form of periodontal disease that requires more frequent periodontal maintenance (PM) treatments to maintain control. Others may have greater success controlling the buildup of disease-causing plaque with at-home oral hygiene measures, and therefore need PM less often. However, for people with a history of periodontal disease, getting PM treatments at a three-month interval may be a good starting point.
What happens at a periodontal maintenance appointment?
A thorough cleaning of the crown and root surfaces of the teeth, aimed at removing sticky plaque and hardened dental calculus (tartar), is a big part of PM treatments — but there’s much more. You’ll also receive a thorough clinical examination (including oral cancer screening), a review of your medical history, and x-rays or other diagnostic tests if needed. The status of any ongoing periodontal disease will be carefully monitored, as will your success at maintaining good oral hygiene. Decisions about further treatment will be based on the results of this examination.
What else can I do to keep gum disease at bay?
Keeping your oral hygiene in top-notch condition — which includes effective brushing and flossing every day — can go a long way toward controlling gum disease.Â In addition, you can reduce risk factors by quitting tobacco use and eating a more balanced diet. And since inflammatory conditions like diabetes, arthritis and cardiovascular disease can make periodontal disease worse (and vice versa), keeping these conditions under control will greatly benefit both your oral health and your overall health.