Gum disease is surprisingly prevalent, and it is estimated that most Americans will have some degree of gum disease during their lifetime. It is an infection caused by bacteria that are present in everyone’s mouth, but if not quickly treated it can have serious consequences.
This common condition has been scientifically linked to many other health conditions, most notably diabetes and heart disease. The reason for this is because it is an inflammatory condition, and during the advanced stages bacteria from the mouth are able to enter the bloodstream, and from there they can travel freely around the whole body, creating more infection.
Bacteria from the mouth have been discovered in the brains of deceased dementia patients, and even in the knee joints of people with rheumatoid arthritis.
One of the main problems with gum disease is that the first symptoms of the disease, a condition called gingivitis, can be very easy to miss. These symptoms include:
- Red or tender gums
- Gums that bleed if you brush or floss
- Swollen gums
- Bad breath
At this stage, a check-up with your dental care center in Brooklyn, NYC can confirm the condition, while professional tooth cleaning will help to remove the infection before it causes permanent damage. You will also need to take extra care with your dental care at home. You must brush thoroughly twice a day, and floss once a day, even if your gums bleed. Your gums should begin to get healthier within a few weeks.
Ignoring these early signs will allow the infection to develop into something called periodontal disease. By this stage you may notice your gums have begun to pull back from your teeth, and some might even be loose. This is because of the inflammation in your gums. It is caused as your body tries to fight the bacterial infection, and can lead to the destruction of gum tissue, the ligaments holding your teeth in the sockets, and the bone surrounding the teeth.
By this stage treatment will be more invasive, more expensive, and is likely to be ongoing in an attempt to control this condition. Periodontal disease is the main reason for tooth loss, not just here in the US, but throughout the world.
Avoiding Gum Disease
Although common, there is no reason why you should develop gum disease as you can prevent it through having regular check-ups and cleanings with your Brooklyn, NYC dentist.
Any early signs can be treated before they create a problem, and our dental team can give you advice on how to care for your teeth and gums at home. Good home dental care is equally important, and this does include flossing.
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