Gum disease is a very real problem that affects many Canadians every year. Due to all the concern and desire for perfect teeth, it’s often overlooked on the list of dental concerns. We’re here to shed some light on this area of the mouth which is often neglected and provide some tips on what you can do to lower your risk of gum disease.
What is Gum Disease?
Gum disease is a bit of a blanket term that can refer to a broad range of gum inflammation and infection. Most adults have experienced at least some form of gum disease at one point or another in their lives. The condition can be as simple as bleeding gums, or as drastic as major damage to nerves and soft tissue.
What Causes It?
The short answer is bacteria. However, there are many other factors that stem from this one word. First off, know that your mouth is always full of bacteria, and that this isn’t a bad thing. It’s an imbalance of “good” vs “bad” bacteria that causes the problem. What causes such an imbalance? A lot of things, including diet, environment, and poor oral hygiene practices. Sugary foods and refined carbohydrates encourage the growth of “bad” bacteria. Improper or infrequent brushing means the bacteria sits on your gums longer, and have more time to eat away at them. So while in the end it’s bacteria that’s to blame, there’s a lot going on in between.
What Can I Do to Prevent it?
Preventive measures start at home. Regular brushing and flossing will rid your mouth of most of the bacteria build up. Alcohol free mouthwash is very helpful to ensure a thorough cleaning. When flossing, make sure you hit right down to the bottom of the gumline, otherwise you won’t be receiving the full benefits.
Finally, and perhaps most important, visit your dentist! They will have the most knowledge about your unique needs and will be able to best answer your questions and concerns about gum disease. Don’t stall a check-up on the basis of convenience or current comfort. Better to get checked and have nothing come up than to let a problem go unnoticed. Centennial Smiles is here to help! Give us a call at (587) 353-5060 today!